Drunk ex 'terrorised' former partner and even called her elderly mum posing as cop

Martin Richardson was sentenced at Teesside Crown Court
-Credit: (Image: Evening Gazette)

An alcoholic would not stop phoning and calling round at his ex-partner's home and even called her elderly mum pretending to be a cop.

Martin Richardson, 38, broke up with his partner after a 15 year relationship - with the ex reporting that he had become "obsessed".

Teesside Crown Court heard he had been "brilliant in supporting" his former partner when they were together and when she had become ill, but then she ended the relationship because of his jealousy. Richardson damaged his ex-partner's Ring doorbell and door handle, as he repeatedly called on her.

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'Knew there'd be trouble'

Emma Atkinson, prosecuting, said that on March 8, the woman "knew there was going to be trouble" as Richardson had been paid, enabling him to buy alcohol. At 3.30am, he rang demanding to know who she was with and said: "I'm going to come down. I'm on my f****** way."

"The defendant banged at the door, demanding to be let in," the prosecutor said. "He pushed his ex-partner and took a bottle of rum, before leaving." Richardson later returned to the house, shouting: "Get the f****** door open or your windows are going in."

When the police arrived at 5.30am, Richardson was seen walking away with a bottle of alcohol, and told officers he was, "heartbroken they had split up." Richardson was bailed on the condition that he did not contact his ex, but he continued to call her. He was also captured on her Ring doorbell footage, outside her home.

On March 15, Richardson was arrested again, and bailed with a condition that he should not to contact his ex-partner. The police reported that he was carrying a bottle of wine, and failed to comply with officers.

A week later, the woman began receiving phone calls in the early hours of the morning. Ms Atkinson told the court that on March 22, the woman's mother, who has dementia, was called by Richardson, who pretended to be a 'PC Hutchinson'.

He told the pensioner: "Tell her a message from me - stop the men coming into her house." In other calls 'PC Hutchinson' said: "Martin has been picked up - you'll be safe now", before laughing.

The victim's mother rang the police, who told her there was no 'PC Hutchinson', and on March 23, Richardson was arrested again, with his phone log showing he had made the calls.

The OAP said that her phone was her "lifeline which connects her to the outside world" but she became afraid to answer it. In a statement, the victim said that she "wanted be left alone to get on with her life and focus on her health."

Richardson, of Bramall Lane in Darlington, who has spent the last three months on remand, admitted harassment.

In mitigation, Jonathan Walker said that the case "demonstrates the destructive potency of alcoholism" going from "a brilliantly supportive partner to harassing her."

Judge Bryan Cox told Richardson that he had "terrorised" his former partner, saying: "You maintain you were fond of her in the past, but your behaviour towards her has demonstrated a complete disregard for her feelings. You've pushed your own jealous interest on her. You have, for quite a long period, engaged in terrorising her."

The judge said that because there had been no restraining order in place; and because Richardson had spent time in prison and pleaded guilty he would not jail him, but was "sorely tempted to do so."

Richardson was given an 18-month prison term, suspended for two-years. He was ordered to attend a "building better relationships" programme; 24-rehabilitation days; and an alcohol abstinence programme. He was made the subject of a 5-year restraining order. He will also be electronically tagged by a GPS system to ensure that he does not go near his former partner, for the next two years. The judge read out a list of roads that are in Richardson's "exclusion zone."

"These are to give her the peace of mind that you won't pester her", the judge said. "If you contact your former partner again, you'll end up serving that sentence as sure as night follows day."

As the judge spoke, Richardson shouted: "I won't!"

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