Sutton text pest faces jail

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A JAIL sentence is hanging over an Ashfield man who threatened to kill his former partner while making menacing phone calls.

Police twice warned Lee Ayers (29), of Northwood Avenue, after being told that he had sent threatening text messages to Emma Swain - but he ignored the harassment warnings.

It led to a non-molestation order being imposed by a court on 10th December last year, prohibiting Ayers from contacting her.

But Ayers phoned her the following day, saying: “’I’m going to kill you”.

Helen Griffiths, prosecuting, told Chesterfield magistrates on Wednesday that the call caused Ms Swain to fear for her safety.

“She received numerous text messages from his mobile, mainly in the small hours of the morning, causing her further feelings of harassment.

“All in all she says she has lived in constant fear for several months and believed he was capable of carrying out his threats,” said Mrs Griffiths.

Ayers was arrested and told police he had been having problems seeing his daughter alone and, “in drink and out of frustration”, sent some abusive messages to Ms Swain.

He accepted making “indirect threats” which he had no intention of carrying out, added Mrs Griffiths.

Ayers, a window salesman, admitted breaching a non-molestation order between 11th December and 6th January.

He received an eight-week jail term but it was suspended for a year.

Magistrates said it was “a blatant breach” and also imposed a one-year probation supervision order and 120 hours unpaid work, with £85 costs.

Matt Evans, for Ayers, said: “He wasn’t interviewed until 6th March and, by that time, he had moved on and had stopped contacting her.

“He had been having great difficulty seeing his daughter, and his mother had a nervous breakdown around this time, so it was a difficult period.”

Mr Evans said Ayers knew his actions were wrong and he had been having treatment at Kings Mill Hospital.