A 53-year-old man has been convicted for stalking UK X Factor winner and his mother
Gay X Factor winner Joe McElderry says he was ‘shaken’ and ‘creeped out’ by a man who stalked him and his mother.
Ennis McBride was found guilty of harassment at South Tyneside Magistrates’ Court yesterday (11 September).
The 53-year-old, who denied the charges, was given a five-year restraining order and made to pay £1,000 plus £915 in costs.
Giving evidence, McElderry spoke of how McBride had visited his house several times and sent him abusive messages on Twitter.
The 21-year-old pop singer described one incident on 11 September, 2011, when the stalker visited his home while he was in the bath.
After a friend answered the door and told him he was not available, McBride went to the house of his mother, Eileen Joyce, and accused McElderry of lying.
‘I was feeling quite shaken and confused, and a bit creeped out,’ McElderry said, reported the BBC.
‘My mum sounded very alarmed and distressed and told me to lock the doors.’
McBride was arrested outside their home after Joyce spotted him earlier at a local Asda supermarket, the court heard.
McElderry said: ‘My mum rang and said "the stalker is back and he’s in Asda".
‘She sounded really upset but she was more concerned where I was and if I was with anyone. After that I went and locked the door.
‘We spent the evening writing out our statement when suddenly a police van pulled up and he was put into the van.
‘I felt intimidated that someone would be standing in the dark outside my house and scared because it was Christmas Eve and it was the last thing I wanted to think about.
‘I understand that I’m on the public platform and I appreciate the support I get but I don’t think I should be made to feel unsafe in my own home.’
The singer, who won the UK version of the talent show in 2009, came out as a result of his Twitter account being hacked but earlier this week said that anti-gay taunts on the social network don’t bother him.
‘I think Twitter is great because you get a lot of response from it,’ he said.
‘When it comes to the trolls, I try not to take it all too seriously, good or bad.’