Wigan man sent string of distressing messages to neighbour

A Wigan man who admits sending distressing messages to a neighbour has been put behind bars while he awaits his fate.

Thursday, 8th August 2019, 8:30 am
Updated Thursday, 8th August 2019, 9:30 am
Wigan and Leigh Courthouse, where the hearing took place

Christopher Whalley, from Worsley Hall, pleaded guilty to sending malicious communications to a woman living on the same street between July 26 and August 3 at Wigan and Leigh Magistrates’ Court.

He will now be back in the dock later this month for a hearing which will also punish him for harassing another neighbour on Greenwood Avenue to which he has previously admitted.

But the bench decided he should be put in jail pending his sentence.

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Wigan and Leigh Courthouse, where the hearing took place

No further details of the malicious communications charge were read out to the court during this week’s hearing.

Whalley, 32, was also found to have breached his bail conditions from the harassment case by making contact with the complainant in that matter.

He denied doing so but the bench found against him following a short set of proceedings.

Prosecuting, Paul Huxley told the court that at around 1.30pm on August 5 the victim of the harassment saw Whalley come to the upstairs front window of his property as she was in her garden with her dogs and unleash a foul-mouthed threat to slit her throat.

Questioned by his solicitor Imran Ali, Whalley completely denied saying anything to the woman, telling the court she had begun making unpleasant comments about him and he had only gestured for her to go away from his home.

It was put to him that this could have been interpreted as a throat-slitting gesture but Whalley said he had no such intention.

The bench found the incident was enough to have breached the bail condition not to contact the complainant in any way.

Mr Huxley told the court that noise monitoring equipment had been installed by the council after Whalley’s previous court appearance and there was only one incident of loud banging during that week, which was unusually low.

However, Mr Ali said Whalley, who lives with his mother at the address, faced a “toxic” atmosphere on Greenwood Avenue due to the hostility between residents and told the court it was not a one-sided affair.

He said: “The circumstances speak for themselves. Neighbour disputes are always a challenging proposition because you see your neighbours frequently on a day-to-day basis.

“My client and his mother say that since April it has been a nightmare.

“His mother is carrying a bag of personal possessions in court because she is so concerned about people creating trouble.

“Their windows have been smashed and are now boarded up. There are two sides here.”

Whalley will be sentenced on August 15.