A MAN who sent an obscene picture of his ex-girlfriend to her “horrified” parents in a drink-fuelled revenge attack has been told he narrowly avoided jail.
Christopher Todd, 22, of Langford Drive, Boldon Colliery, forwarded a photograph of the victim’s private parts to her mother’s mobile phone – along with an abusive text message – to get back at her after she accused him of assaulting her.
Todd was told by magistrates in South Tyneside, he only avoided jail because he admitted sending an indecent and offensive communication.
The Merchant Navy sailor received an eight-week jail sentence – but walked free from court after magistrates agreed to suspend the term for 12 months. Todd admitted to sending a communication of an indecent and offensive nature at an earlier hearing at South Tyneside Magistrates’ Court.
He initially denied the offence, but changed his plea to guilty, when he was found not guilty of an assault against his former partner. He was back at the court yesterday to be sentenced.
Todd sent the graphic image – along with an abusive text claiming his former partner had spread sexual diseases to “everyone in South Shields” – weeks after the pair had broken up.
In a victim statement, the woman’s mother said she had received the messages at about 3.07am on May 18 last year.
She felt the messages were sent “maliciously by Todd to shock and upset her, and cause distress and embarrassment to her and her daughter”.
Police were called and Todd was charged with sending the offensive image.
Ian Cruickshank, defending, said the messages had been sent in anger – and drink – after the victim had accused Todd of assaulting her after their break-up.
He was acquitted of the assault charge at South Tyneside Magistrates’ Court in April.
As well as an eight-week suspended prison sentence, Todd was also ordered to pay court costs of £150 and a victim surcharge of £80.