Text pest warned with jail after campaign against ex

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A PEST who bombarded his ex with up to 10 texts per day has been warned any more messages would be a “one-way ticket” to jail.

Steven Booth was banned from having any contact with Michelle Quinn after he was convicted in June of assaulting her.

Newcastle Crown Court heard within weeks of the restraining order being made, the 49-year-old started to send texts.

The court heard the messages were initially apologetic in relation to the attack which ended their six-year relationship.

But the 49-year-old soon started making threats, such as “tonight’s the night” and “legs broke tonight”.

Prosecutor Michael Bunch told the court: “Miss Quinn states she is unable to recall the first contact the defendant made with her after the making of the order.

“She was aware the order had been made that prohibited him from contacting her.

“He sent her text messages. Initially, they were apologetic in nature in relation to the assault, which took place and terminated their six-year relationship.

“She said she was fed up with the contact, so she responded, sending a single text which said ‘leave me alone’.

“Despite that, the texts continued, up to 10 per day, and they became more aggressive and angry in tone as she carried on ignoring them.”

Booth, of The Oval, Concord, Washington, admitted breaching a restraining order.

Judge James Goss QC sentenced him to a community order for 18 months with supervision, 80 hours’ unpaid work and a new five-year restraining order.

He said: “If he sends any more texts, it is a one-way ticket. I hope you have learnt your lesson now, If you haven’t, you will learn it the hard way in future.

“You deliberately flouted a restraining order that was made by sending, for a period of about three weeks, a series of text messages that caused alarm to your ex-partner.”

Jamie Adams, defending, said Booth has worked hard all his life and was lonely after the relationship broke down.

Mr Adams said: “If you had not understood, he certainly seems to now.

“It just went too far.”

Mr Adams said Booth is unfamiliar with the court system and is unlikely to re-offend in future.