Retford stalker bombarded ex with threats and assaulted her in car park

Mansfield Magistrates Court

Mansfield Magistrates Court

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A Retford man stalked his ex-partner and sent her dozens of threatening and sexually-explicit messages before assaulting her on a night out, a court has heard.

Craig William Arthur Tomlinson, 31, of Bovington Court, denied two counts of harassment without violence and one count of assault, but was found guilty at Mansfield Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday.

Amar Sanghara, prosecuting, described Tomlinson as ‘a man who can’t accept the end of a relationship’.

“He is obsessive, controlling and his behaviour does amount to almost stalking, certainly harassing, the victim.”

Police examined his phone in January and discovered he had sent the woman 96 texts, some of which were attempts to reconcile, some of which were threats.

In one, Tomlinson accused the woman of ‘throwing our relationship away just to be with a lying, cheating, 21-year-old drug-taking scumbag.’

In another, he wrote: “I’m in Harworth driving around looking for him. If he’s man enough, tell him to meet me at the pavilion car park.”

He texted her: “I hope you get AIDS and die” and told her he had put a tracking device on her car so he would know where she was.

Tomlinson followed the woman to the Blacksmith’s Arms, on Main Street, Harworth, on January 16 and struck her ‘a glancing blow’ which caused a small cut, before taking her mobile phone, the court heard.

Tomlinson told the court he had been test-driving his aunt’s car when it developed a fault and had stopped outside a pub to investigate it when his ex-partner had attacked him, dropping her phone into the footwell of the car.

He later used the phone to ring the woman’s mother and then report the ‘assault’ to police.

He said he weighed 18 stone and had trained as a cage fighter, telling the bench: “If I hit her in the face she wouldn’t have a little cut.”

Mr Sanghara asked: “How did he know she was going to be there on that night? Is it sheer coincidence or does it reveal this defendant closely following and watching what his ex-partner was up to?”

Tomlinson also denied demanding his ex remove a picture of herself and another man from Facebook and sending her messages via a fake account.

But when his phone was examined, his ex’s number was stored under the name ‘Foxy’, which had been used in the Facebook messages.

Tomlinson said his ex partner had sent the messages to herself in order to frame him.

David Verity, defending, urged magistrates to give Tomlinson the benefit of the doubt and find him not guilty, but he was convicted of all three charges.

Tomlinson was told his evidence was not credible and his demeanour in court had been ‘evasive’.

Sentencing was adjourned until June 1 for reports and a restraining order was imposed, forbidding him from contacting the woman in any way or entering the Nottinghamshire village where she lives.