Custody for man who harassed advocate

News from the courts

News from the courts

A man with a long history of harassment offences has been sent to prison by the Deputy High Bailiff.

Jonathan Richard Fletcher, of Horseshoe Avenue, in Douglas, admitted three offences of making annoying or nuisance telephone calls and one of conduct amounting to harassment, between December last year and March this year.

The 50-year-old made numerous telephone calls to the emergency services, on one occasion demanding an ambulance then telling paramedics he had toothache when it arrived.

In the very early hours of December 12 last year he made no fewer than six emergency calls. On a separate occasion, he called requesting the ‘assassinations department’.

There was no legitimate reason for the calls, the court was told, but he had ranted and complained about an Isle of Man advocate.

The diatribe then moved on to complaints about police being noisy and his regrets at moving to the island. He also claimed there was an intruder in his house.

After numerous calls. police turned up at the house to check on him and he claimed to be well, but less than two hours later he again called 999.

In February this year, Fletcher made four more calls, two on the emergency 999 number. In one he complained about a dog barking. He was arrested and charged. But despite this, in March there was a further wave of 999 calls.

Seven, mostly unintelligible, emails were also sent to police.

Fletcher told police at interview: ‘I only do it when I’m anxious and I’ve stopped now.’

An earlier hearing was adjourned for psychiatric and probation reports before sentencing.

Fletcher’s advocate Ian Kermode said his client accepted his behaviour was probably upsetting for those on the receiving end of it.

But he said Fletcher had been involved in prolonged legal proceedings.

‘As a litigant in person, when he receives a letter from his wife’s lawyer it triggers his erratic behaviour. He does not have professional representation.

‘He feels at a disadvantage as a litigant in person. He does not understand all of the court proceedings, but he accepts his actions were “unforgivably offensive”, as he himself puts it.

‘He is bitterly diappointed in his behaviour and very sorry.’

Passing sentence, Deputy High Bailiff Jayne Hughes said: ‘You are an intelligent man stuck in a rut of your own making because you are unable to control your reaction to events that you should be able to deal with.’

She noted he had breached an ASBO and had a previous conviction for harassing the same victim.

He received 18 weeks’ custody for harassment.

No separate penalty was imposed for the nuisance calls.

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