OAP stalker’s jail warning

Blackpool Magistrates Court

Blackpool Magistrates Court

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A lonely pensioner became besotted with a woman but when she spurned his advances, his obsession turned to stalking.

Colin Hodgson,75, met the woman in the pews of her village church and it was in the church graveyard that his campaign of harassment ended months later.

The love-struck sailor left her a note telling her he was in love with her and would go to the ends of the earth for her.

He also left her a love letter on her husband’s grave on the anniversary of his death knowing she would visit the churchyard.

Hodgson had bombarded her with phone calls, notes, invitations to his yacht club and offers of holidays.

He visited the widow’s home and business and left her a hoard of unwanted gifts.

Hodgson, who splits his time between his yacht moored on Skippool Creek and his home in the Ribble Valley village of Copster Green, pleaded guilty to stalking the 64-year-old woman when he appeared before Blackpool Magistrates.

He was jailed for 50 days suspended for 12 months.

He was placed on 12 months supervision and made the subject of a 12 month restraining order.

He must pay £360 costs.

He must not contact his victim, not enter Singleton village and not stop on Mains Lane.

Don Green, prosecuting, said: “This is a lengthy case involving this man’s unrequited love which turned obsessive.”

The two met in November 2009 at St Anne’s Parish Church, Singleton.

Mr Green added: “He invited her to an event at his yacht club but she told him she was a widow and not interested in a relationship.”

Magistrates heard Hodgson started to make frequent calls to her.

He invited her ski-ing and even sent ski boots and ski clothing to her home.

Hodgson referred to her as his lady-friend and she began to get so worried she had to hide in the rear premises of her shop and stopped going to church for a time.

John McLaren, defending, said: “My client thought he was helping someone but she did not want help.

“He is a lonely man.

“He was clearly besotted by this woman. However he now wishes to apologise.”

Stalker given suspended prison term

Hodgson was arrested after leaving a note on the gravestone of his victim’s late husband – despite having been given an official police caution.

Hodgson was arrested and told police he did not think what he had done was harassment.

He was jailed for 50 days suspended for 12 months. He was placed on 12 months supervision and made the subject of a 12 month restraining order. He must pay £360 costs.

He must not contact his victim, not enter Singleton village and not stop on Mains Lane.

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