Victim of Wigan stalker says 'He made my life hell - I’m glad he’s gone to jail'

Police probe
Police probe

A man cleared of raping and beating a woman has been jailed for stalking her.

The victim told the Wigan Post today that Mark Yeates had made her life “hell” and threatened to kill her after walking free following a trial last year.

In December, Yeates, 48, from Carr Street, Platt Bridge, was found not guilty by a Bolton Crown Court jury of raping and causing actual bodily harm to the woman, who cannot be named for legal reasons.

In the meantime, a restraining order was requested and after he approached her home after the trial he was bound over to keep the peace by Wigan magistrates.

The restraining order was obtained on December 20, stipulating that he not approach the woman or her home.

But a Bolton judge heard that Yeates ignored it, going back to the house, sending threatening messages via a mutual friend on Facebook Messenger and, after managing to get hold of his victim’s new number, texting her a “vile” message too.

The woman’s car was vandalised and the windows of her home were broken, but Yeates denied responsibility for this and, after plea bargaining between barristers, it was agreed to drop criminal damage charges if he admitted to the three counts of harassment on December 22 and January 1.

The judge sentenced Yeates to a total of 18 months in jail.

He also imposed a new five-year restraining order not to approach or contact the victim.

Yeates had already been remanded in custody for five months pending the court appearance, so that time will count towards his overall sentence.

His relieved victim said today: “I was like a prisoner in my own home.

“I did not go out over Christmas and new year when he was hounding me.

“The message he sent to the friend was saying he was going to kill me.

“And the barrister said that the text sent to me was too vile to be read out in court.”

However, she was disappointed at the length of the sentence. She said: “Personally I thought he would get a longer prison term.

“However, I am pleased at least that the restraining order was extended.

“He is a frightening man and he made my life hell.”