Houghton Regis stalker made ex-partner’s life a nightmare

Luton Crown Court
Luton Crown Court

A Houghton Regis stalker made his ex-partner’s life a nightmare by bombarding her with calls and publishing fake pornographic images of her online, a court heard.

In a five-month campaign, 29-year-old Sam Gower, of The Green, sent explicit emails to the woman’s family, friends and colleagues as well as a resignation letter to her boss.

Finally, Gower set up a false Facebook account to threaten the woman’s new partner with the words ‘you’re dead’ and attached three explicit images.

At Luton Crown Court on Friday, it was heard that Gower and the victim had suffered a “terrible blow” when they lost their baby. This led to the break down of their relationship.

Handing him a suspended sentence after hearing his circumstances, Mrs Justice Cockerill said: “It cannot minimise the massive damage you’ve done to a woman you claimed to have loved.

“The campaign you waged was extremely serious, it was persistent and it’s plain to me that it caused her very serious damage.

“It’s hard to imagine just how upsetting having these sorts of images sent to friends, family and employers would be.”

The court was told that Gower turned to alcohol to cope with the loss of his baby and became suspicious of his ex-partner’s activities.

He began to stalk her in April 2017, following her while she was in a car with a work colleague whom she later entered a relationship with.

Mrs Justice Cockerill said: “You appeared suddenly outside her car and drove erratically behind her.

“She stopped, saying she was extremely scared.

“You then began bombarding her with emails and texts. You hacked her email account and Facebook accounts.

“You posted photoshopped pictures of her on Facebook and sent emails to her friends, family members and work colleagues.

“These contained what purported to be explicit images of her and yourself.

“You sent a resignation letter to her employer. You were calling and texting her up to 60 times a day.

“Finally, you set up a Facebook account in the name ‘George Armstrung’. Through that, you sent the message to [her new partner].”

In addition to a 12-month prison sentence suspended for two years, Gower was ordered to participate in a ‘Building Better Relationships’ programme, 30 days of rehabilition requirement activity, a six-month curfew between 8pm and 5am, and 60 hours of unpaid work.