Stalker is jailed after harassing ex-partner
PUBLISHED: 16:24 21 July 2020 | UPDATED: 16:35 21 July 2020
A stalker who made his ex-partner’s life “a misery” through a campaign of harassment has been jailed after changing his pleas.
On what was due to be the second day of his trial, Darren Summers, 48, pleaded guilty to one count of stalking to cause serious alarm and distress and six counts of criminal damage.
Ipswich Crown Court heard that Summers began stalking his ex-partner and damaged property belonging to her, her mother and her boss during a series of incidents in September and October last year.
Matthew Sorel-Cameron, prosecuting, said the stalking behaviour began after the relationship between Summers and the woman ended on August 30.
Despite being told to stop contacting her, Summers continued to harass the woman and in one exchange told her “the good life was over”.
Summers, of Defoe Road, Ipswich, began monitoring the woman’s day-to-day movements and she “feared for her own safety”, Mr Sorel-Cameron said.
Posters, designed to embarrass the victim, were also put up near her place of work and near the school her children attended.
A fingerprint belonging to Summers was found on the back of one poster, the court heard.
On September 19, the woman’s car was scratched while she was at the gym and mobile data from Summer’s phone, which police later acquired, put him at the location in the timeframe.
A concrete slab was thrown through the victim’s front door window on September 26 and the following day, Summers went to the victim’s work and told her: “You’ve got a lot worse to come”.
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Also on September 27, Summers was captured on a security camera throwing bricks at the victim’s back door.
A stone then smashed the living room window of the woman’s mother’s home in Ipswich before Summers returned around 2.35am on September 28 and threw a brick through the same window, causing further damage.
Two 999 calls were played to the court by Mr Sorel-Cameron, giving an indication of the distress caused by Summers in those incidents.
A car, belonging to the woman’s boss, was also damaged by Summers.
In a victim impact statement read in court by Mr Sorel-Cameron, the woman said she did not feel safe in her own home and was forced to take her children out of school.
The woman added that she was looking to leave Suffolk due to the stalking.
In a separate victim statement, the woman’s mother admitted to feeling “terrified” due to Summers’ actions and was having trouble sleeping.
The court heard that Summers, a father-of-five, had 21 previous convictions.
Judge Martyn Levett told Summers he had made the woman’s life “a misery” through his campaign of intimidation and harassment.
He told Summers: “You are entirely obsessed with yourself and your own needs.
“She lived in fear of what would happen next because you said to her, ‘You’ve got worse to come’.”
Judge Levett sentenced Summers to a total of three-and-a-half years in prison and issued a restraining order, banning Summers from contacting the victim.
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