A 51-year-old Inverness man could not accept he had been dumped for a second time by his girlfriend so he began stalking her.
Joseph Shields was banned from contacting or approaching his victim Patricia Hornby for three years yesterday after a non-harassment order was imposed by Sheriff Margaret Neilson.
Shields appeared for sentence at Inverness Sheriff Court after admitting the stalking charge and was ordered to carry out 150 hours of unpaid community work, placed on one year’s social work supervision and instructed to have alcohol abuse treatment.
The court was told that Shields had been in a relationship with Ms Hornby for six years, but his drinking brought it to an end about 12 years ago.
They got back together in 2014 while Shields was attending Beechwood House for an alcohol recovery course and Ms Hornby invited him to her home for the occasional weekend because he was sober.
“However she ended the relationship when he resumed his drinking,” fiscal depute Roderick Urquhart said.
Shields, whose address in court papers was given as c/o Beechwood House, admitted engaging in a course of conduct which caused Ms Hornby fear and alarm by making phone calls to friends and family asking about her whereabouts between August 17 and November 9 last year at various addresses in Kirkhill and Inverness.
The charge went on to say he delivered letters to Ms Hornby’s daughter, sent a funeral brochure, various photographs and also damaged a car belonging to Ms Hornby’s son Kirkhill.
He also entered her house when it was unoccupied and slept in her bed.
Defence lawyer Neil Wilson said: “What he did was foolish and inappropriate but he is sober now and accepts the relationship is over. His clear intention is not to behave like this again.”
Shields was also banned from making contact with other family members and associates of Ms Hornby.