A taxi driver used his job as an excuse to follow his former partner around Dundee after she broke up with him.
Creepy cabbie Gary Middleton, 37, was eventually reported to police by his ex’s 19-year-old son after nearly six weeks of trying to control her and subjecting her to abuse.
Dundee Sheriff Court heard that Middleton, formerly of Chirnside Place in Dundee, had been in a relationship with the woman for around seven years.
The fiscal depute prosecuting the case told of how the pair had had children together and had tried to end the relationship amicably.
However, Middleton embarked on an abusive course of behaviour instead.
On occasion, the victim saw Middleton sitting in a car facing the gym she was attending.
When she challenged Middleton, he said he was in the area as part of his job – as a taxi driver.
Sheriff Lorna Drummond was told of other occasions on which Middleton had accosted his ex at a cash machine, and other occasions on which he shouted and swore at her, and parked outside their children’s school to watch her collect them.
Following a threatening phone call sometime in September last year the complainer’s 19-year-old son, seeing the distress caused to his mother, reported Middleton to the police.
Defence solicitor Kevin Hampton, in mitigation, said the 37-year-old had now accepted the relationship was over and no longer works as a taxi driver in Dundee.
“There has been a significant change of employment and he now lives in Arbroath,” he said.
A motion to defer sentence for good behaviour was declined by Sheriff Drummond, who ordered Middleton to complete 160 hours of unpaid work within 12 months.
She told him: “I’m of the view that while custody is appropriate here I’m giving you a last chance to see if you can do that.”
Middleton admitted engaging in an abusive course of behaviour towards his ex-partner between August 16 and September 24 at various addresses in Dundee.
This included repeatedly phoning and emailing her, attending at places he knew she would be, her place of work and home, checking her mobile phone to monitor, control and regulate her communications, following her, shouting, swearing, acting aggressively and attempting to restrict her ability to socialise.
Middleton was also ordered not to approach or contact his former partner, or to enter or seek to enter the street she lives on for five years.