Original article from Kent Live
It's an unfortunate truth that many women across Kent have had their lives touched by stalking.
While some have been left terrified by the campaigns of ex-partners and even random men, others have lost their lives to their stalker's horrific actions.
On National Stalking Awareness Week, KentLive is looking back on the women who have suffered at the hands of these sadistic predators.
Stalking is classed as any behaviour from another person which is persistent, unwanted and harassing, anything that causes the victim any kind of fear or anxiety.
Examples of this inappropriate behaviour include repeatedly turning up at someone's home uninvited, sending unwanted gifts or monitoring their texts and emails.
It can take place at home, online, at work or on a night out. Stalkers often use multiple methods of harassing their victims, but any such behaviour is illegal and downright dangerous.
Below are just some of the men who have been jailed in the county in recent years for the vile attacks on women they have stalked.
Joshua Stimpson, 26 was sentenced to life in prison after he stalked and finally murdered his ex girlfriend.
It was heard at the trial, that found Stimpson guilty of murder, how his victim Molly McLaren, 23, felt "like I'm looking over my shoulder all the time".
Molly dumped Stimpson after his behaviour became controlling, and she told him he was "suffocating her".
But Stimpson, who unbeknownst to Molly had a history of abusing ex girlfriends, wouldn't accept the relationship was over and turned nasty.
Stimpson would attack her on Facebook with derogatory posts, despite Molly blocking him on social media.
He attempted to humiliate his victim by ruining the healthy image she had created for herself through fitness blogs.
He even went to the extreme lengths of recruiting another woman to stalk Molly's social media pages.
Molly had reported his alarming behaviour to the police, twice.
His sadistic stalking ways began to escalate, until he eventually stabbed Molly 75 times.
He followed her to pubs and then eventually the gym, at Chatham Dockside, where he murdered her, on June 29, 2017.
Stimpson was found guilty in February 2019. He will not be considered for parole for 26 years.
Michael Pech repeatedly stalked and eventually murdered his ex-girlfriend, before shooting himself.
He was sentenced for the murder of a beauty consultant from Tunbridge Wells, who worked at Harvey Nichols in Knightsbridge London.
This is where Michael met his victim, 22- year-old Clare Bernal, as he worked as a security guard in the same store.
Pech, 30, went on three dates with Clare, after they met in 2005 at the store in London.
But once the pair broke up after three weeks, Pech began a stalking campaign against her.
The Slovakian ex-soldier stalked Clare for nine months, plaguing her phone with endless calls. He would text her up to 50 times a day and watch her while she worked.
Pech would continue to stalk Clare in the street and even followed her home every night.
The horrific stalker would then threaten Clare that if she went to the police, he would kill her.
But Clare eventually had to report Pech's behaviour to the police.
On September 13, 2005, Pech walked into the London store, he shot Clare in the back of the head and then three times in the face, as horrified colleagues and shoppers watched on before turning the gun on himself.
Anthony Hurdle was identified as Britain's "most notorious" stalker on a TV programme.
The 41-year-old former naval officer was sentenced to life in prison for the attempted murder of his ex-girlfriend, who he stalked relentlessly.
Hurdle's victim, Lorraine Nicholson, ended her relationship with him, after seeing Hurdle on TV, where he was named Britain's "most notorious" stalker".
The Hythe navel officer stalked Lorraine in the run up to the attack on November 24, 2000.
Maidstone Crown Court heard how Hurdle showed up at her home in Ashford, and forced his way through the door.
After this he cut her left arm so severely, it severed all the veins and arteries.
Hurdle was jailed for three years prior to this, for stalking another girlfriend.
He started following, phoning and sending obscene letters to Tracey Sant, a previous girlfriend.
Hurdle was jailed on three occasions for burgling her home, stealing her knickers and following her.
He also littered her front garden with condoms.
A man from Tilling Close in Maidstone was sentenced after stalking a woman and making unwanted contact over several weeks.
On September 8 last year, Thomas Lloyd tried to break into her relative's home, and was planning to stab himself when she arrived on the premises.
Lloyd had been continually making unwanted contact with her, seeking a relationship and causing her considerable distress.
He would threaten to harm himself in spite of the fact the woman had told him to stop and blocked him on social media.
On October 1 last year, he gained access to her house and damaged her property and opened her letters.
Lloyd was sentenced to one year and ten months in prison for his crimes, at Maidstone Crown Court, on March 10, 2021.
PC Chris Crawford of the Maidstone Vulnerability Investigation Team said: "This man continually harassed the victim over several weeks and caused her significant distress.
"He knew she did not want him to make contact with her and carried on regardless. He should be thoroughly ashamed on his conduct.
"It is right that he is now serving a prison sentence and I would like to thank the victim for bravely assisting investigators to bring him to justice."
A man with no known address, was jailed after repeatedly stalking a woman in Sevenoaks.
Maris Subbotins, 44, was jailed for two years at Maidstone Crown Court on September 2020, after leaving the victim hiding in her toilet, terrified.
He entered the woman's home on April 25 last year, after she refused to let him in.
The woman, who had no idea who the offender was, ran to her bathroom to hide.
She could hear the floorboards creek as Subbotins moved around her house and managed to call Kent Police for help.
When the police attended the property, they found that the woman's front door had been damaged and her phone had been taken off its receiver.
This was the third occasion of stalking the woman had faced from the 44-year-old, as she had seen him twice before loitering in her garden.
On April 22, she reported seeing Subbotins standing in her garden, looking at her at through the window, he gestured for her to let him in and went to the front of the house to bang on the front door.
At 9am on April 25, she reported him in her garden, as she noticed the bushed rustling in her garden and saw him emerge, walking towards the house.
A man was jailed for threatening and stalking a woman, forcing her to change evidence against him.
Perri Gulliford, 29, is formerly from Dover and was jailed for three years and three months at Canterbury Crown Court on June 19, 2020.
Gulliford had been stalking a woman by searching for her at homes of family and friends. He had also been sending the victim threatening text messages.
He sent her messages implying she would be the victim of an acid attack, he even told one of her family members that he had paid someone to throw acid on the woman.
A week after the stalking began, he was arrested but because he registered the woman's phone number as one of his relatives to the prison authorities, this allowed him to continue to threaten the victim into changing her evidence.
The victim wrote to the court to change her statement due to his phone calls, but Kent Police investigated and uncovered Guillford's actions.
Detective Inspector James Wyles said: "Stalking and harassment can have a devastating effect on victims' lives and Kent Police remains focused and committed to bringing offenders to justice.
"I would encourage anyone who fears they are being stalked or who is suffering abuse at the hands of someone they know to report it to us.
"Be reassured you will get the support you need and we will find an outcome which is right for you.
"Despite Gulliford’s actions, our officers put together a strong case which has led to this evidence-based prosecution and a significant sentence."
A milkman who stalked and then sexually assaulted a woman after breaking into her home at night wearing surgical gloves was jailed for eight years.
Kevin O'Driscoll, described by a judge as a 'manipulative and dangerous liar' was handed an extended sentence for public protection.
He must therefore serve at least two-thirds of the jail term before even being considered for release. A further two years will then be added to any licence period.
A court heard he confronted his victim outside her bedroom door, having pestered her for several months.
The woman, who cannot be identified for legal reasons, described him as 'peculiar' and told a court she was so frightened by his 'creepy' behaviour on earlier occasions that she began keeping notes.
A court heard she even bravely confronted 49-year-old O'Driscoll to tell him to his face he was a stalker.
But events escalated when, having warned him she would report him to police if he did not leave her alone, O'Driscoll replied: "Right, now I'm going to do something about you."
Two days later he broke into her house and subjected her to a terrifying ordeal, leaving her fearing for her life, Maidstone Crown Court was told.
O'Driscoll, from Leysdown in Sheerness, denied stalking between September 1, 2017 and May 29 2018 but changed his plea to guilty a day after the victim had given evidence at his trial in December.
He admitted additional charges of trespassing with intent to commit a sexual offence, and sexual assault.
However, O'Driscoll, who also worked as an odd-job man, denied assault by beating and attempted rape. This was accepted by the prosecution.
He was sentenced to eight years in jail and will spend an extra two years on license when his custodial sentence is completed.
A violent attacker who stalked a woman before violently sexually assaulting her in a Chatham alleyway was jailed.
The offender who attempted to rape the woman as she was walking alone has been sentenced to 10 years and eight months in prison.
Edmas Milto stalked the woman for almost a mile before carrying out the serious sexual assault as she walked through an alleyway in July 2018.
The 24-year-old, of Canterbury Street in Gillingham, pleaded guilty to attempted rape and assault and was sentenced at the same court.
The court heard that shortly after 2.50am on July 24, 2018 Milto grabbed the woman as she walked in an alleyway in Haig Avenue.
A violent and prolonged assault then took place, during which he attempted to rape her.
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The incident was captured on CCTV and after the attack officers were able to track Milto’s movements through Medway to the general area of his home address.
Following extensive patrols in that area, Milto was detained when an officer saw him and recognised him from the CCTV images.
Detective Inspector Kaye Braybrook, the senior investigating officer for this case, said: "Milto subjected the victim to an extremely violent and degrading attack and his actions clearly show him to be a serious danger to women.
"The investigation team were able to build a strong case against him with the support of the victim who has shown such bravery in how she is dealing with this life changing attack.
"He will now spend a substantial amount of time in custody, where he is unable to cause further harm to the public."
A stalker who threatened to throw acid in the face of a woman living in Swanley was sentenced to five years in prison.
Jason Malcolm-Randall used phone calls, text messages and social media accounts to repeatedly harass, abuse and make threats of violence towards his victim.
Some of the messages were made to appear as if they had been sent from other people, with warnings not to speak to police and that the victim’s email and mobile phone were being monitored.
As well as threats to assault the victim with acid, the woman was also told her house would be burned down and that she would be abducted into the back of a car.
The victim also received several letters and messages from loan companies, after Malcom-Randall used her details to obtain loans and credit cards. Orders for phones and computer equipment were also made in her name.
Aged 29, of Black Boy Lane, West Green, London, Malcolm Randall was arrested on March 13, 2019 and remanded in custody.
Appearing before Maidstone Crown Court he pleaded guilty to stalking, putting a person in fear of violence by harassment, as well as two counts of breaching a non-molestation order which related to previous offences against the victim.
He was convicted over offences which took place between July 2017 and March 2019.
On August 19, Malcolm-Randall was sentenced to five years imprisonment with an extended licence period of three years. He was also made subject on an indefinite restraining order.