Marriage failure ends in court

Jedburgh Sheriff Court
Jedburgh Sheriff Court

A Stirches man who was unable to come to terms with the end of his eight-year marriage, bombarded his ex-wife’s parents and friends with messages, repeatedly walked past her home address, and left notes for her.

Over an eight-month period, Roy Murphy would appear on routes she used, making sure she saw him, although not speaking to her.

The 51-year-old, of Ancrum Court, admitted to engaging in a course of conduct which caused his former wife fear and alarm in Ramsay Road, Common Haugh and at other locations in the town between August 1, 2013 and April 7 this year.

Depute fiscal Claire Bottomley told Jedburgh Sheriff Court how the accused contacted his ex-wife’s parents, saying he was sorry for what had happened and that he wanted to get back together with his former wife.

He posted a letter through their door sating he would do anything to make the relationship work.

Murphy’s former wife was driving to work when she noticed the accused standing at a bus stop.

“She was scared, as he had previously threatened to step out in front of her car,” said Ms Bottomley. “She was then walking to work and could think of no reason for him to be there as early in the morning.

“He appeared on various routes she uses and she ignored him, but he would make sure that she saw him, although didn’t speak,”added Ms Bottomley.

In December, one of the woman’s friends recieved about 10 messages from Murphy saying he wished to get in touch with his ex-wife.

“He repeatedly contacted her parents,” said Ms Bottomley.

Solicitor Ed Hulme said his client worked as a full-time refuse collector.

“He previously suffered a brain injury which affects his ability to let go,” explained Mr Hulme.

“He didn’t mean to cause her harm,” added the solicitor.

Sheriff Peter Paterson described the offence as “a sad case” and deferred sentence for nine months, until March 13 next year, for Murphy to be of good behavior.

Murphy was released on bail with a condition not to contact his ex-wife or her parents, and he was ordered not to deliberatley be somewhere she could see him.