Detectives have welcomed the sentencing of a Sefton man for stalking an ex-partner.
Between September 2019 and January 2020, following the breakdown of their relationship, Francis Fitzmaurice stalked his female victim, observing her, calling her and interfering with her vehicle, significantly affecting her day to day life.
Following enquiries, 47-year-old Fitzmaurice, of Wicks Lane, Formby was arrested and charged with stalking involving serious harm and distress.
At Liverpool Crown Court on Friday, 29 May, he was sentenced to two years and four months in prison after pleading guilty. He was also given a 15 year restraining order.
Detective Constable Joe Rea said: “Fitzmaurice’s actions caused serious distress to his victim, having a huge impact on her life and resulting in her living in fear for months.
“It’s pleasing to see him now put behind bars and I hope his sentencing allows the victim some closure and to move forward with her life. I also hope this sentencing reassures anyone else that may suffering that we take such offences extremely seriously. Victims of stalking offences can quite rightly feel unsettled, distressed and isolated, but if you come forward to report it, we will use the law to protect you and work closely with our partners to ensure you are treated with sensitivity, care and compassion.”
"If you feel you have been a victim of this type of crime, please get in contact with police. If you are ever in immediate danger always dial 999. If you do not want to contact the police at this time then seek support from other agencies or speak to friends and family about what is happening. But above all else: don’t suffer in silence."
Anyone who would like to report an offence of stalking or who has information is encouraged to contact Merseyside Police on 101 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.
You can also call the National Stalking Helpline, a project run by the Suzy Lamplugh Trust, on 0808 802 0300.