Student sent jar of animal organs to woman

A student who sent a woman a jar containing animal organs during a year-long harassment campaign has been spared a jail term.

Stephen Nesbitt, aged 21, with an address at Drumfinn Avenue, Ballyfermot, Dublin, was fined €300 after he pleaded guilty to harassing the woman from January 1 until December 20, 2013.

Judge Michael Walsh also banned Nesbitt, who is currently doing a five-week computer course in Trinity College, from contacting the woman and he was warned to stay away from her west Dublin home.

Dublin District Court heard Nesbitt met the woman at a music class and he “began to think there was more to their friendship than there actually was”.

When she did not return his affections and he found out she had a boyfriend, he began a campaign of harassment.

Over a 12-month period, Nesbitt sent her a jar containing bloody animal organs; plastered 80 stickers on lampposts calling her a slut; sent vile messages on Facebook; and threatened to put a pipebomb in her garden.

The court heard the woman “was never more than friends with the defendant”.

Garda Sergeant Smith told the court the harassment culminated with the victim finding a glass jar outside her house. “It appeared there may have been some kind of animal organ and appeared to be blood in the jar,” she said.

Gardaí have yet to receive a certificate of analysis to say exactly what it was, the court heard.

Nesbitt sent her another message saying “he was in love with her and if she did not respond she would only have herself to blame”. The court heard he threatened to spraypaint her name followed by the words “is a slut” but the woman indicated she was not frightened of him. He sent her another message that he would get a baseball bat and leave a pipebomb in her garden.

Judge Walsh heard Nesbitt placed 80 stickers — naming her and calling her a slut — on lampposts in the woman’s area. “And he threatened to put photos on her Facebook page and he stated she was ‘cum-whore’ and other remarks that she was a slut,” the court heard.

He also told a counsellor that he was going to harm himself.

Sgt Smith agreed with the defence solicitor, Yvonne Bambury, that Nesbitt has not had any contact with the woman for more than a year. Judge Walsh also heard he had no prior criminal convictions.

Ms Bambury furnished the court with a psychiatric report and said Nesbitt was still attending services. She asked the judge to note that Nesbitt pleaded guilty and was under pressure and “was having a lot of difficulties at the time”.

The defence pleaded with the judge to consider sparing Nesbitt a criminal record.

However, Judge Walsh said that was not possible as a result of the trauma suffered by the victim. He noted the graphic details given in evidence.

A conviction was recorded and the judge fined Nesbitt €300, which must be paid within four months or he will be jailed for five days in default. He was also bound over to keep the peace for 18 months with conditions that he must not contact the woman directly or indirectly and that he stay away from her family home.

Nesbitt spoke briefly to say he wanted the case dealt with at district court level and not before a judge and jury in the circuit court, and that he was pleading guilty.

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