'What's your f**king name' stalker loses court appeal

A CALOUNDRA man who argued his conviction of stalking and $2000 fine was "manifestly excessive" has lost his Supreme Court appeal.

David Merton George Cox was convicted of stalking in the Maroochydore District Court on March 31, 2015, after a four-day trial.

The court documents showed the stalking charge arose after Mr Cox approached a housekeeper at the Caloundra resort where he was living on three separate occasions.

Mr Cox had seen the housekeeper talking about him to another colleague and apparently took offence and called out: "Are you talking about me?"

When the woman turned her back on him, he swore at her to the effect of "what's your f**king name."

This formed the basis for the "first incident".

The second incident happened the same day when the woman saw Mr Cox approach her again and ask: "What's your f**king name? Who are you? You've been talking about me."

This "unsettled the complainant" who was "heard to yelp" and raced back into another room.

The third incident occurred eight days later when the housekeeper was exiting a lift and saw Mr Cox barring her way. He again said, "What's your f**king name? Who are you?" and stopped her from exiting the lift for a total of about 30 seconds.

She locked herself in a storeroom out of fear.

The court heard the housekeeper had suffered some stress arising out of a marriage breakdown and was on a mental health-care plan.

She denied she had overreacted to the incidents or that the general manager of the resort had encouraged her to go to police to "ramp up the allegations".

The jury agreed with her and found Mr Cox guilty of the stalking charge. The trial judge also found she feared violence from the episode.

Mr Cox was given a $2000 fine as he refused probation and a conviction was recorded. He was also given a restraining order.

He appealed the verdict as he said it was "unreasonable as it could not be supported, having regard to the whole of the evidence".

But in the judgment, handed down on October 7, Judges JA Philippides and JJ Douglas argued this ground "is not made out".

Even though the jury was advised there was "no actual violence, or threats of actual violence", this was not the issue.

Section 359e (1) creates the offence of unlawful stalking and defines it as conduct which is intentionally directed at a person, happens on more than one occasion and included an "intimidating, harassing or threatening act against a person whether or not involving violence or a threat of violence".

Mr Cox, who represented himself in court, made reference to his mental-health issues and asked for "patience, leniency and compassion from the court".

But in dismissing the appeal, the judges said the trial judge was "extremely fair" and the fine of $2000 "can in no way be challenged as manifestly excessive".



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