Radio Sandwell Local News

Jealous stalker set up camp in ex-girlfriend's back garden

2015-02-21 19:11:34

James AndrewsStalker James Andrews, who set up camp in his ex-girlfriend's back garden.

A jealous stalker camped out in his ex-girlfriend's back garden so he could spy on her in a terrifying harassment campaign.

James Andrews set up a hidden tent yards from Jemma Lewis’s Birmingham home – and made chilling comments about when she took a bath.

The 39-year-old also threatened to publish explicit photos of his former lover and bombarded Miss Lewis with up to 50 Facebook messages-a-day.

Birmingham Crown Court heard Andrews was driven by “suspicion and jealousy” because he thought she was in a new relationship and feared he was not the father of her unborn child.

Jailing him for 16 months, Judge Mary Stacey said: “The stalking was very serious because it was so persistent, involved physical contact, text messages, telephone calls, following her around on a bicycle and even setting up base in her back garden.”

Iain Willis, prosecuting, said Andews launched his campaign last October after the couple’s nine-year relationship finally broke down.

On one occasion, he grabbed the 29-year-old by the throat and threatened to pour boiling water on her, Mr Willis said.

He added: “There were threats to post material that had all the hallmarks of being explicit material on the internet.

“The defendant had a fear that Miss Lewis had taken up with someone else.”

Mr Willis said there were more calls and messages and on October 31 Lewis followed the victim.

He said Andrews also made comments about when she took a bath “which lead her to believe he was watching her”.

Mr Willis went on: “The police found there was some sort of makeshift tent made up of tarpaulin in the garden and a bag of property belonging to the defendant.

“The prosecution case is that he had certainly been staying there and loitering there over periods of time watching what Jemma Lewis was doing.”

Andrews, 39, of Fairfax Road, Northfield, admitted a charge of stalking.

He was also handed an indefinite restraining order banning him from contacting Miss Lewis.

John Smitheman, defending, said Andrews was aware that what he had been doing was “totally wrong” and had been frightening for the victim.

He said the defendant’s “untrusting nature” made him believe her baby was not his, although that turned out not to be the case.

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