A man has been sentenced today (5 April), after he was found guilty of stalking in October. He was convicted in his absence as he failed to attend court.
Officers managed to locate Stephen O’Reilly, 50-years-old, of Berkeley Avenue, Reading, on Monday, 25 February after a warrant had been issued for his arrest, he was remanded in custody.
O’Reilly began stalking his victim in August 2017, and his behaviour spiralled out of control. O’Reilly stole items of clothing from the family home and would use WhatsApp to taunt his victim by messaging her and her family, as well as changing his profile picture to one of her.
Over the coming months his behaviour started to get more concerning, and he started to stay in hotels close to his victim, he stole items from her home and threatened to kill her.
Investigating officer, PC Julian Crabbe from the Complex Abuse Unit at Surrey Police Headquarters, said: “O’Reilly’s behaviour reflect the persistent, obsessive behaviour, typical of a stalker. He would make contact with his victim’s family and not only send them WhatsApp messages, but also went to their home and left notes on the front door.
“O’Reilly, like other stalkers, caused a huge amount of anxiety and distress to his victim. His behaviour led his victim to install CCTV at her property, and this is what helped us locate him and get the result we have today.
“I would advise anyone who is the victim of stalking to come forward and report their concerns to us. There are a number of steps you can take like O’Reilly’s victim did, such as installing CCTV at your property, and varying your daily routine.”
Following his appearance at Guildford Crown Court today (Friday 5 April), Stephen O’Reilly was sentenced to a 22 month sentence (suspended for two years) for stalking, a further two month sentence (suspended for two years) for absconding, a restraining order against him, and must complete 180 hours community service and attend 20 rehab sessions.
If you fear you are being stalked there are some steps you can take:
- Tighten up security at home, to and from home, and at work. Change the locks to your home and if you can, install a burglar alarm or camera.
- Vary your daily routine if walking or driving to work or other places.
- Be careful when giving out personal details when on the phone, dealing with credit card services, social networking sites and people you meet.
- Tell people what is happening to you, particularly at work and at home.
- Support is also available through the National Stalking Helpline - 0808 802 0300. The helpline is open 9am – 4pm weekdays (Wednesday’s - 1pm-4pm), and the number is free to call.
- For more information about stalking, and how you can report it visit: