108 calls from phone pest ex who refused to take no for answer

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By Cara Sulieman

A MAN harassed his ex-girlfriend by breaking into her flat and pestering her with hundreds of phone calls, text messages and letters.

Christopher Fowler, 27, admitted breaking into home of his ex Catherine Southcott just days after the pair broke up.

He went on to subject her and her mother to a campaign of phone calls, text messages and letters which continued even when he was in prison.

At Edinburgh Sheriff Court today (tues) Fowler admitted two breaches of the peace and breaking the terms of his bail by contacting Ms Southcott.

The court heard that Fowler had first been arrested after he broke into the home of Ms Southcott in the early hours of May 10 while she was sleeping.

The couple had broken up their four month relationship just two days before.

The court was told Fowler couldn’t leave his ex alone and began to pester her, starting on May 9 when he called her, left answer phone messages and sent texts saying he was going to come round to her flat.

Ms Southcott told Fowler she didn’t want to come round to her flat in Brighton Street, Edinburgh, and said she wouldn’t be in.

Fearful

The depute fiscal said: “At 2am on May 10 the complainer was within her bedroom and her flatmate was also within the flat.

“She became aware of noises outside her front door in the communal stair and became fearful that the accused was outside.

“She phones his mobile phone number at which time she heard his phone ringing in the communal stair.

“She continued to hear noises for a while but didn’t contact the police or put on a light as she was fearful the accused would realise she was home.

“After the complainer thought the accused had left she went in to the living room at which time she heard the kitchen window opening and saw the accused swinging his legs in the kitchen window and pull himself inside.

“She then saw him creep down the hall. The accused could not see the complainer from where she was standing.

“When they arrived the complainer was very distressed.

“Police officers made their way in to the complainer’s bedroom and the accused was found hiding under the bed.”

Fowler was released on bail from Edinburgh Sheriff Court on May 10 and was told he wasn’t to contact Ms Southcott.

But the harassment started again the next day when Fowler borrowed a friend’s phone to send a text message to her.

And on May 12 Fowler send an email to Ms Southcott saying “he looked at pictures of her every day to keep him from killing himself”.

Ms Southcott reported him to the police and he was remanded in custody for breaching his bail conditions on May 18.

But still the harassment continued.

Letters

The depute fiscal said: “Shortly after he was remanded in custody the complainer started receiving letters from him both to her home address and her mother’s address in England.

“Both her and her mother felt very scared and intimidated not only because of what was in the letters but also because of the number of letters.

“Between May 18 and June 18 21 letters in total were sent from the accused.

“Letter dated May 28 states that if he did not hear from her in the three months two weeks he was in remand he would come and find her.”

A further five letters were found in his cell by prison guards.

When police went to the prison to get phone records for Fowler they found he had tried to make a total of 108 calls to Ms Southcott’s old mobile phone number.

Sheriff John Horsburgh deferred sentence for social enquiry reports.

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