Man pestered estranged wife trying to find out if she had new partner, court hears

PUBLISHED: 15:31 20 May 2020 | UPDATED: 15:31 20 May 2020

Norwich Crown Court
picture by Adrian Judd
for EDP

Norwich Crown Court picture by Adrian Judd for EDP

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A man pestered his estranged wife with more than 50 text messages and made “a thorough nuisance of himself” by trying to find out who she might be in a relationship with, a court has heard.

Craig Champion, 49, had split from his wife who he had been together with for 12 years in July last year but continued to see his children.

But Norwich Crown Court heard his behaviour changed after divorce proceedings were started.

David Wilson, prosecuting, said the defendant was constantly turning up at the marital address uninvited and was seen by neighbours on “a number of occasions”.

The court heard the defendant thought his wife was seeing someone else and wanted to find out who that was.

Between mid December and the end of December last year Champion sent the victim 58 text messages accusing her of seeing someone else and seeking information about who it might be.

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She also received a further 20 messages from the defendant between December 26 and 28.

The victim had not wanted to engage with Champion who was arrested after having been seen trying to take pictures of car registration plates at about 1am.

A statement from the victim described how Champion’s actions had impacted both her life and her children’s and was “ongoing” adding that she has paid for CCTV to protect her and her family.

Champion, of Ipswich Road, Long Stratton, appeared in court for sentence on Wednesday (May 20) having admitted an offence of harassment.

Judge Anthony Bate said the defendant had sent unwanted text messages and generally “pestered” his estranged wife, adding that he had “made a thorough nuisance of himself”.

He sentenced the defendant to a 24 month community order, made up of up to 20 days Rehabilitation Activity Requirement (RAR), a 35 day building better relationships (BBR) programme and a three month electronically monitored curfew between 9pm and 6am.

He was also made the subject of a 24 month restraining order prohibiting him from contacting the victim directly or indirectly, save for the purposes of organising child contact.

John Morgans, prosecuting, said these offences were “very much out of character” and insisted he was “ashamed” things had come to this and “ashamed to be in this court”.

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