Newport Facebook nuisance harassed three women
2:20pm Wednesday 12th February 2014 in News
A NEWPORT man has been found guilty of harassing three women through social media and by sending sexually explicit books.
Mark Willis, 28, of Morgan Street, denied three counts of harassment without violence concerning on the trio through social networking site Facebook.
During a trial at Newport Magistrates’ Court, prosecutor Ceri Murphy said Willis had harassed Ana Bowring, Carmen Goodyear and Amelia Woodruff and their friends over a period of two years by sending lengthy Facebook messages from three profiles Lecultant Caterwaul, Billy Sinner and Handcuff Harrry.
The court heard Willis had made friends with Ana Bowring on social media and had made unwanted contact with her by sending her a book titled ‘Lolita’ which had a sexual theme on December 21, 2012, followed by another book ‘My Secret Garden – Women’s Sexual Fantasies’ which contained graphic sexual content on January 7, 2013, through Amazon’s anonymous delivery service.
Willis admitted to sending the books, stating that he thought she would like them.
He also sent a number of messages about Ms Bowring via Facebook to her friends Alexandra Morgan, Lydia Hood, Rachael George, and Lloyd Flay, from January to August 2013.
Willis also sent a message to Ana Bowring herself via Facebook on June 11, 2013.
Five witnesses said they were all contacted by Willis, along with evidence from PCs Daniel Finch and Carl Watkins who arrested Willis following complaints of harassment from the women.
Appearing via video link, MsWoodruff she she accepted a Facebook request from the defendant under the profile Lecultant Caterwaul as they had mutual friends.
She said she felt “really weird” and “sick” after receiving the messages and blocked him, but later received a friend request from a Billy Sinner, also the defendant, and later blocked that profile, before receiving another friend request from a Handcuff Harry which she did not accept.
Ms Morgan, Ms George, Mr Flay and Ms Hood, also told how they received long messages from Willis about Ms Bowring.
Deputy District Judge Jim Davis found Willis guilty of the charges.
In mitigation, Willis said he was suffering from depression and mental anxiety.
The judge said: “I have seen some Facebook messages (to Ms Goodyear) that are said to be from the defendant and some of those include content of a sexual nature.
“I am convinced that the defendant knew or ought to have known that his conduct should amount to harassment.”
He added that he was also satisfied that the defendant’s contact with Ms Bowring and Ms Morgan, Ms Hood, Ms George and Mr Flay amounted to harassment.
Willis was granted conditional bail under the instruction he is not to contact Ms Bowring, Ms Woodruff or Ms Goodyear.
He is not to enter Caerphilly County Borough, he must not enter any data referring to Ms Bowring into an electronic device and he must stay at his address in Newport.
The sentence was adjourned until March 6 at Newport Magistrates’ Court, while a pre-sentence report is prepared.