Man avoids prison after harassing ex and breaching sexual harm prevention order

A man avoided jail after admitting harassing his ex-partner and failing to comply with a sexual harm prevention order.

David Saunders, 48, of Cresswell Street in Lynn, appeared at the town’s magistrates’ court on Thursday where he admitted to the two offences.

Prosecutor Adbul Khan explained that between the dates of December 24 last year and January 20 this year, Saunders sent a number of Facebook messages to his ex-partner after the relationship ended “badly” five to six years ago.

Saunders was at Lynn’s Magistrates' Court on Thursday
Saunders was at Lynn’s Magistrates’ Court on Thursday

“She moved away to safeguard her and her children,” said Mr Khan.

The series of messages mentioned feelings towards the complainant, as well as asking about the children.

He also sent links to YouTube videos, which the complainant did not open due to Saunders sending her graphic videos in the past.

These were sent using a Facebook account with a different last name, which put Saunders in breach of a sexual harm prevention order imposed on him for three counts of making indecent photographs of children in 2019.

It means that he is required to inform police if he changes his name or address, and he did not inform officers of a change of name on his Facebook account.

In mitigation, Charlotte Winchester explained that Saunders often used the different last name on his Facebook.

“He was born David Jackson, then took on his step-father’s name as Saunders. He uses both names,” said Ms Winchester.

She continued: “It was Christmas day, he was thinking about his children and used Facebook to reach out.

“They were in his thoughts and he didn’t think of the consequences of sending those messages.

“He didn’t want to cause distress, he wants contact with his children.”

Saunders’ offences did past the threshold to go into custody, however, magistrates opted to give him an 18-week suspended sentence.

He was also ordered to carry out 20 rehabilitation activity days and wear an alcohol monitoring tag for 90 days.

Saunders was told by magistrates to pay court costs of £145 and a victim surcharge of £122.

He was also given a two-year restraining order preventing him from getting in touch with his ex-partner.