After terrorising his childhood sweetheart, Shane Fudge was described as a ‘classic stalker’ when in court to be sentenced for his offending.
Appearing at Portsmouth Crown Court for making the woman’s life a misery during his stalking exploits of 2018, the defendant, who had also been serving time behind bars for malicious communication against his former lover, was spared further prison time after vowing to change his ways.
The 28-year-old’s reign of terror resulted in her being so frightened she locked herself in the house after being left paralysed by fear.
Fudge would bang on the door of the home and make menacing threats before matters turned even more sinister when on one occasion he brandished a knife, leaving the victim fearing the worst.
In a statement read out to the court by prosecutor Tim Moores, the victim described her torment. She said: ‘I’m scared I’ll run into him and don’t like being alone in the house. He comes to the house and bangs on the door. I can’t remember the last time I had a good night’s sleep. I am so frightened.’
The demise of the couple’s relationship had caused Fudge to ‘go off the rails’ in spectacular fashion, with much of his offending taking place when he was drunk or high on drugs, the court heard.
Judge Timothy Mousley QC summed up the threatening pattern of offending Fudge inflicted on his victim. He said: ‘Your behaviour manifested itself in a number of ways including threatening her and on one occasion you even had a knife.
‘During the middle part of the year you went completely off the rails with most of your stalking done when you were drunk or on drugs. You caused enormous psychological torment and caused her to live in fear. You made her life a misery.’
But despite the damning view of Fudge’s sustained and harrowing actions, judge Mousley was persuaded by the defendant’s barrister James Caldwell that the offending was a thing of the past.
Acknowledging Mr Moore’s view of Fudge as a ‘classic stalker’ who refused to ‘accept his relationship was over’, Mr Caldwell said Fudge’s penchant for stalking was merely due to his turmoil following the end of the relationship.
‘His behaviour was down to emotional instability and immaturity,’ Mr Caldwell said. ‘It was a serious misjudgement in a volatile relationship.’
The barrister also revealed that during Fudge’s eight weeks behind bars for malicious communication when he was sentenced in October, he had achieved ‘trusted prisoner status’ for his efforts to reform his ways.
‘The saving grace for Mr Fudge is that there is a realistic prospect of rehabilitation,’ he said.
Judge Mousley decided to spare Fudge jail due to his ‘determination to change his ways’ and for ‘staying out of trouble for a significant period’.
Instead, Fudge, of Lords Street, Portsmouth, who admitted stalking and possessing a knife, was given a 12-month jail term suspended for 18 months. He was also told to complete 175 hours of unpaid work and 20 rehabilitation days, pay £500 compensation and was given a restraining order for five years.