A man who was discovered with a crossbow near his dentist’s home has been jailed after breaching a restraining order.
Thomas Baddeley – a former patient– secretly stalked dentist Ian Hutchinson for four years until he was stopped by police in November last year.
He was found with a crossbow, a large knife, hammer and bleach. But after sentencing in August, he was released on license due to the time he served on remand.
However, Baddeley was arrested earlier this month after a police officer spotted him attempting to disguise himself near Dr Hutchinson’s practice.
He pleaded guilty to breaching his restraining order. As a result, he has been jailed for two years.
DC Ceri Parker, the officer in the case, said: ‘Tom Baddeley chose not to comply with the legal restrictions imposed on him and sought to further harass his victim.
‘Breaching a restraining order is a serious matter as this sentence illustrates. These protective orders are handed down by the courts to keep people safe.
‘Baddeley has failed to comprehend that. This was completely unacceptable behaviour.
‘No person should have to live with the fear associated with the offence of stalking as Baddeley’s victim has.
‘Gwent Police will not tolerate this form of behaviour. We take all allegations of harassment seriously and our officers will investigate them thoroughly.’
In an exclusive interview with Dentistry Online, Dr Hutchinson said there is a ‘loophole’ when it comes to the policing of stalkers.
After a number of dentists came forward and spoke of similar experiences, he is now calling for a change in the law. He also gave advice for fellow dental professionals.
‘Be aware of your surroundings. And do some counter-surveillance training,’ he said.
‘You have to collect your own evidence. Whether that’s CCTV footage or photographs. Document everything, because the law will let you down.’
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