Stalker’s messages, photos leaves former partner in fear

A GOLD Coast tiler left his former partner feeling shamed and in fear after he spent six months sending her unwanted text messages, phone calls, letters and photographs.

Some of the letters were even sent while Beau Vernon Kerslake was behind bars.

Kerslake pleaded guilty in the Southport District Court on Friday to unlawful stalking in contravention of a domestic violence order.

The 37-year-old will be released next month after being sentenced to 18 months jail to be released on parole on April 19.

He has been in custody since March last year.

Crown prosecutor Michael Mitchell said that between January 27 and June 20 last year Kerslake began to repeatedly contact his former partner via phone, social media.

"They were harassing and some occurred in the early hours of the morning and late at night," he said.

The contact did not stop when Kerslake was taken into custody on March 6 last year. Instead he sent numerous cards letters and phone calls.

All of the calls and messages were in breach of a domestic violence order.

Mr Mitchell told the court the woman had sought counselling and had been diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder which was exacerbated by the repeated contact from Kerslake.

"She has expressed to our office shame she feels as a result of the relationship and expressed a real concern that upon his release the cycle will commence again," he said.

Judge Julie Dick said it was a question of "how to treat someone who doesn't obey protection orders".

"Your behaviour is very disturbing and you don't comply with court orders," she told Kerslake.

"I know there was a drug element in this because it was so flurried the contact you were making."

Kerslake told Judge Dick he "got back on the drugs and my relationship fell apart".

Judge Dick suggested he talk to his doctor as soon as he is released about going on a mental health plan to help him stay away from drugs.

"I will," Kerslake replied.

Kerslake also told the court he wanted to finish a course while in custody and the additional month behind bars would allow him to do so.

Defence barrister Sarah Thompson, instructed by Allen & Searing Criminal Lawyers, said Kerslake suffered a long term drug addiction after starting to use cannabis at 15.

"At the time of this offending he was using amphetamines, methamphetamines and cocaine," she said.

Ms Thompson said time in custody had been tough for Kerslake due to the coronavirus pandemic.

lea.emery@news.com.au

 

 

 

 

Originally published as Stalker's messages, calls, letters and photographs leaves former partner in fear


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