'I was stalked by real-life Baby Reindeer Martha - now I'm scared again' Scots woman claims

Laura Wray, widow of former Labour MP Jimmy Wray, has spoken out about her fear and distress as the woman who stalked her for five years re-enters the public eye.

Fiona Harvey - who is claimed to be the inspiration behind Martha in the Netflix series 'Baby Reindeer' - recently gave an interview to Piers Morgan, triggering painful memories for Laura.

She claims that her ordeal began when she hired 58-year-old Harvey for a two-week trial at her Glasgow law firm in 1997.

After being fired for abuse within a week, Harvey allegedly reported Laura to social services with false claims of child abuse.

Laura said: "I hadn't thought about her for years. I had forgotten so much of it. Every time someone says a comment, it triggers it again. Memories of things that she did. Some of her actions. It's pretty distressing. Watching her last night [on Piers], how did I manage to cope with that for so long? ".

"My partner and I are concerned about what she might do next. Is she going to come after me? She is posting things on Facebook accusing me of all sorts, and of being abusive. You don't know where it will end."

Laura believes she features indirectly in Baby Reindeer via a fictional newspaper article with the headline: Sick stalker targets barrister's deaf child. And she urged the woman's friends to help bring the circus to an end.

Laura added: "If she does have any friends, surely they should be trying to help her and calm things down. But she doesn't want to calm things down. Part of her is really enjoying this. She even had a makeover for Piers Morgan."

Laura Wray
Laura Wray said Baby ­Reindeer’s real-life ­Martha has brought back the horrors of her own stalking ordeal -Credit:DAVID McNIE PHOTOGRAPHY

Baby Reindeer has become one of the most-watched Netflix shows of all time since it was released on April 11, with more than 22 million worldwide streams. Martha, played by Jessica Gunning, latches on to a struggling stand-up comedian Richard Gadd and is eventually jailed.

Each episode begins with the words: "This is a true story."

Laura said she was shocked by the fact Netflix "didn't attempt to hide the stalker's identity".

She added: "Even if she wasn't mentally ill, if you are doing a show billed as a true story where the people are still alive and might be harmed, there is a duty of care. But she seems obviously so mentally ill. They haven't done enough to protect her."

Laura pointed out the uncanny resemblance between Martha and her real-life stalker, commenting: "It was obvious to me and to a lot of other people that she was my stalker. They made her a lawyer. That detail didn't have any bearing on the story. They could have made her a doctor, or an accountant."

"The only thing they changed about her was her name. The lady Jessica who played Martha was excellent... she sounds like her, she looks like her. I mean, she had the same laugh, even the same slightly kind of funny waddling walk. Even when I briefly employed her, she would do the same sort of things."

After being dismissed, the woman began to harass Laura with incessant phone calls and bad-mouthed her to other solicitors, eventually extending her harassment to Laura's family and friends.

The tipping point came when she falsely accused Laura to social services.

Laura recounted: "She made some bizarre allegation that I was in my car driving and somehow managed to hit my son who was sitting in the back of the car in the child seat. Eventually it was all dropped but that's when I went for an interim injunction. Thankfully, it worked. She didn't defend it. We never heard any more from her."

Piers Morgan went head to head with Fiona Harvey -Credit:INSTAGRAM
Piers Morgan went head to head with Fiona Harvey -Credit:INSTAGRAM

In the conclusion of Baby Reindeer, the fictional Martha admits guilt to stalking Gadd and receives a nine-month prison sentence.

However, Laura's stalker maintains her innocence, asserting she has never faced charges or imprisonment.

Denouncing the series as pure fiction, she stated: "That is completely untrue, very, very defamatory to me, very career-damaging."

Last night, the Scot refuted claims that the Facebook messages she sent were abusive and contended that there was no interim injunction against her due to a mix-up in the paperwork.

Netflix has remained tight-lipped and has not issued any statements regarding the characters portrayed in the series.

From a psychological standpoint, stalking behaviours are often seen as an extreme reaction to unfulfilled childhood needs, likely stemming from trauma.

"They may stem from unresolved psychological conflicts, such as feelings of inadequacy. Stalkers may project their desires, fantasies, or fears onto their victims, creating a distorted perception of the relationship. They may develop a fixation on the victim, believing that they are in a special relationship, even when it doesn't exist."

"Additionally, the stalker may experience a sense of validation from knowing they are in their victim's mind, even if the attention is unwanted. Being held in the mind of the object of their obsession reinforces their belief that they have a special relationship with the victim, contributing to the persistence."

"Perhaps a victim may have elicited strong emotions in the stalker. This may have further fuelled obsessive behaviour. From the stalker's perspective, their actions may be driven by emotions, such as obsession, or a desire for control. They may believe that their behaviour is justified, particularly if they feel rejected by the victim."

In the gripping play Baby Reindeer, Martha, who plays the stalker, is ultimately brought to justice and imprisoned.

Dr Goddard-Crawley reflects: "This distorted perception may prevent them from fully understanding the consequences of their actions. Being exposed and convicted of stalking can lead to feelings of humiliation. Legal proceedings and media coverage can magnify these feelings."

As the plot thickens in the Netflix series, we see Martha's character come undone as she loses her grip on her target.

The psychologist continues: "Stalkers often engage in their behaviour to exert control over their victims. Being convicted can represent a loss of this control. They are also unlikely to understand they have done anything wrong, and may believe their behaviour is warranted - particularly if they feel rejected, betrayed, or wronged by the victim."

"They may struggle to understand the impact of their actions on the victim's well-being and fail to recognise that their behaviour is causing harm. The stalker may interpret any response from their victim, whether positive or negative, as confirmation of the relationship."

In the hit show Baby Reindeer, the character Martha relentlessly pursues her target Donny through thousands of emails, countless hours of voicemails and unwavering contact.

Those tuning into the drama come away with the impression that she's blissfully unaware of the damage she's causing.

According to Dr Goddard-Crawley: "A stalker's lack of understanding of the harm they're causing may reinforce their delusion that there is a genuine relationship. It may also contribute to their sense of justification for their behaviour."

"There is no single profile of a stalker but there are common factors that may contribute. Many stalkers have a history of failed or problematic interpersonal relationships. This may include difficulties forming and maintaining close relationships, and a pattern of rejection or betrayal by others."

"They often have low self-esteem and may seek validation through their relationships with others, leading to an intense fear of abandonment."

On top of this, throughout Baby Reindeer, Martha frequently constructs an inflated persona by claiming she's a successful lawyer with powerful connections, despite viewers observing her whiling away her day in the bar where Donny works over a single complimentary Diet Coke.

The psychologist further explained: "Stalkers are more likely to have a history of mental health issues, such as depression, anxiety, personality disorders, or delusional disorders, which may impair their ability to form healthy relationships. Many stalkers also have a history of trauma or abuse. They often exhibit obsessive or fixated personality traits, characterised by an intense preoccupation with a particular person or relationship, which they may seek to maintain control over."

Get the latest celebrity gossip and telly news sent straight to your inbox. Sign up to our daily Showbiz newsletter here.