News

Graham’s bid to rebuild life

CHARGE DROPPED: Graham Barrott had a stalking charge dropped in the Gympie District Court last week, but not before having to leave his job.
CHARGE DROPPED: Graham Barrott had a stalking charge dropped in the Gympie District Court last week, but not before having to leave his job.

GYMPIE man Graham Barrott spent more than a year preparing to fight charges against him in a trial that never made it to court.

Mr Barrott was charged by Gympie police with unlawful stalking of a co-worker in 2012.

The case went all the way to Gympie District Court where Mr Barrott had planned to plead not guilty during last week's sittings.

When he appeared before a judge in the dock last week he was prepared to go to trial to clear his name. What he was greeted with was news the prosecution was withdrawing the charge.

While Mr Barrott said it was a relief for the charge to be lifted, he was disappointed the matter was drawn out in vain over what he described as "hearsay".

He said with the September 6, 2012, charge came a bail condition not to attend his and the alleged victim's place of work, but as they worked at the same place Mr Barrott was forced to leave his job. After that he went from a man pursuing a career to accepting government payments and working as his own legal representative.

In that time Mr Barrott was able to collect enough evidence to build a case against the charge, but said he did not understand why it was able to be pursued for as long as it was.

He said aside from his own denial of the allegations, he was able to prove several of them wrong.

He is now seeking compensation for the stress the ordeal has caused him.

Mr Barrott said the stress of the charges, the personal conflict and loss of his job took its toll in August 2013, when he was admitted to hospital.

He said even now the charge had been dropped, he had difficulties when he saw his former colleagues.

"Mud sticks," he said.

"I still get emotional."

Mr Barrott is now seeking answers and compensation for the allegations, explaining the charge had cost him more than a year's wages, his reputation and his well-being.

"Where's the justice?" he asks.

"I had to resign from my lawful place of employment over nothing."

Topics:  court stalking

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