ITV's Stalking: State Of Fear shows stalker turn tables on victim and accuse her of following him

This new documentary speaks to the victims
This new documentary speaks to the victims -Credit:No credit

ITV documentary Stalking: State Of Fear unveils the chilling tactics of a male stalker who attempted to flip the narrative on his victim, resulting in her being wrongfully accused by the police of stalking him.

The programme delves into the harrowing experiences of those haunted by stalkers, revealing the devastating impact on their lives and the struggle for recognition and justice within the criminal system. 'Louise', one of the victims featured, shares her ordeal with the show: "If you can imagine living like you are going to be killed every single day for two and a half years, it's like living in a war zone."

The documentary, which airs on Tuesday, April 30 at 9pm, also highlights the difficulties women face when reporting stalking incidents to the police, noting that a mere one in 20 reports lead to a conviction. It questions whether the justice system is ready to address stalking more earnestly as many victims feel let down by a system that should offer them protection. Get the best user experience with WalesOnline’s Premium app on Apple or Android

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Marie, a professional in women's health, recounts her unnerving experience after a short-lived romantic encounter during lockdown led to persistent stalking. She recalls: "We went on a few dates. I started to see little red flags that made me think, 'I'm too busy for this'. Months later he contacted me and said his van had broken down. Could I help? Because I have two cars. I said, 'of course you can. You can borrow one of the cars'." It was only later she discovered he had secretly placed a tracking device on her vehicle, reports the Mirror.

She recounted: "He was turning up to places where I was. During that time, I started to think things were strange. I then looked at the CCTV footage on the property and I discovered a man coming into the porch and planting something at my front door. I also woke up to find a big hole in my hedge. I was so frightened. I was afraid to go out. I didn't know what was going to happen next."

Marie spoke about her anxiety saying: "My anxiety was such that I couldn't work. I was anxious. My hair was also falling out at that point, quite dramatically. I felt embarrassed. I felt like everything was my fault."

Her stalker, Kelvin James, admitted placing the tracker and pleaded guilty to stalking without fear and distress. Consequently, he was given a restraining order preventing him from contacting Marie and approaching her home.

Strangely enough, whilst an order was still active against him, Kelvin reported Marie to the police, fabricating claims that she was the one stalking him. She had to face the uncomfortable experience of being questioned by the police, and having her phone taken for investigation. Marie told the police: "I would certainly not be going to hunt down a man who I've got a non-molestation order on."

Adding further, she expressed concern: "If he has the ability to be able to get me arrested for something I haven't done and create this mayhem, there is no limit and there is no limit to the mind of the stalker. They're obsessed, they're fixated and they won't give in." At Wigan Police Station, Greater Manchester, she was forced to deny she was stalking Kelvin James. The case was only dropped six months later.

She added: "In my opinion, every aspect of the criminal justice system is stacked against the victim when it comes to cases of stalking and harassing. From reporting the crime, the attitude of the police. There's a lack of education and understanding. The whole system isn't fit for purpose and it needs a huge overhaul. It's failing women."

A woman the programme calls 'Louise', whose stalker has pleaded guilty and is awaiting sentencing, says she has experienced more than four years of terror. She tells the documentary: "I had to change my appearance. I would say that it's not fear, it's terror... The first stalking episode he was waiting outside my house, he was sending unwanted messages. Threats... smear campaigns, his friends were contacting me. He'd been watching me, he knew when I was at home, he knew when my children were at home." For the latest court reports, sign up to our crime newsletter here.