Why more must be done to stop stalkers

Closer (UK) - - Contents -

Joshua Stimp­son made head­lines last week when he was jailed for life for the bru­tal mur­der of his ex-girl­friend, stu­dent Molly Mclaren, 23. Stimp­son, 26, stabbed Molly to death out­side her lo­cal gym in Chatham, Kent, on 29 June 2017. The fren­zied at­tack in­cluded 75 stab wounds to the neck, chest and throat. Wor­ry­ingly, Molly – who briefly dated Stimp­son af­ter meet­ing on Tin­der in July 2016 – had pre­vi­ously re­ported him to the po­lice on two oc­ca­sions for ha­rass­ment and on­line stalk­ing, but he was only given a ver­bal warn­ing.

Molly’s heart­bro­ken mum, Joanne, said last week that her daugh­ter’s death had left her feel­ing “com­pletely empty”.

An­other mum who un­der­stands how that feels is Tri­cia Ber­nal. Her daugh­ter Claire, 22, was mur­dered by her ex-boyfriend, Michael Pech, in Septem­ber 2005. Two weeks ear­lier, he had pleaded guilty to ha­rass­ment in court, but had been re­leased on bail by po­lice be­fore sen­tenc­ing.

Here, Tri­cia – now a trustee of the na­tional char­ity Pre­ven­tion Against Stalk­ing – tells Closer how more needs to be done to pro­tect vic­tims be­fore it’s too late.

Stimp­son was jailed for life last week for bru­tally mur­der­ing his ex-girl­friend

CCTV showed Stimp­son fol­low­ing Molly into the gym mo­ments be­fore the at­tack

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.