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Dunedin woman stalked ex-landlord for nearly 10 years

A Dunedin woman stalked her former landlord for nearly a decade, at one point couriering him a key to her home, a court has heard.

Ngaire Teresa Wilson, 42, pleaded guilty to criminal harassment but argued a conviction would severely hamper her career aspirations as a taxi driver.

Counsel Brian Kilkelly accepted a conviction would not automatically bar the NZ Transport Agency from granting his client a passenger endorsement but argued she would likely be knocked back in such circumstances.

Judge Michael Turner, however, said there was no affidavit evidence from the agency or from any expert in the field.

Wilson’s plans, he said, were “aspirational at best” and he rejected the application for a discharge without conviction.

“This offending impacts on aspects of public safety… it would be wrong to hide your conduct from the [NZTA],” the judge said.

Wilson met the 48-year-old victim in 2011 when he was her landlord.

“They have never been in a relationship, but the defendant has become obsessive towards him,” a police summary said.

The “stalking-type behaviour” came to a head in 2018 when Wilson drove her car into the victim’s workplace and his ex-partner’s home before deliberately crashing into a power pole.

She was charged in relation to the incident, the court heard, but acquitted on the grounds of insanity.

In August last year, Wilson got back in touch with the man, sending 10 emails to his work address.

She also sent him a key to her home via courier, court documents revealed.

The victim contacted police and Wilson was served a notice under the Harassment Act, banning her from contact with the man for 12 months.

The defendant managed to restrain herself for six months but then sent her ex-landlord 16 emails in a month and created a Facebook page using his surname.

Kilkelly said she was ashamed of her actions and her mental health had since stabilised.

He told the court the defendant had been a respected taxi driver in Dunedin and Oamaru and was keen to restart her career.

“She is absolutely adamant she will not make contact with him again,” Kilkelly said.

Judge Turner said the victim had been hit hard by the experience.

He was scared for the safety of his family and had to manage areas of his life to make stalking him more difficult, the court heard.

Wilson was sentenced to 12 months’ supervision and warned off further contact with the victim.

“If you don’t leave this man alone and you reappear in court, the response next time might be the loss of your liberty,” the judge said.

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