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ITV presenter Isla Traquair opened up about her seven-month stalking ordeal when she called on the government to change stalking laws to better protect victims.
Speaking to Charlotte Hawkins and Adil Ray on Good Morning Britain on Tuesday, the ITV presenter revealed she cannot live in her dream home because the man convicted of stalking her, Jonathan Barrett, still lives next door.
The 42-year-old admitted she suffers from PTSD after the ordeal and is still recovering after being stalked by her neighbor.
Isla Traquair is candid about her seven-month stalking ordeal and has called on the government to change stalking laws to better protect victims on Good Morning Britain on Tuesday
Jonathan, 54, “terrorized” the news host for seven months, even climbing over her garden wall and entering her house to offer a sandwich.
Isla suffered nightmares and panic attacks as a result of Barrett’s stalking between March and September last year after moving into her idyllic 18th-century country house on the edge of the Cotswolds.
The journalist became so terrified of her obsessive stalker that she spent thousands of pounds fortifying her home with fences and security cameras before finally fleeing her home.
Talking about her ordeal she said, “The thing with stalking is, it’s not one big thing, it’s not an attack, like wow, this is obvious someone punched me in the face, it’s insidious, it’s a drop- , drip effect of all these different behaviors.
Jonathan Barrett, 54, ‘terrorized’ the news host for seven months, even climbing over her garden wall and entering her house to offer a sandwich
The ITV presenter spoke to Charlotte Hawkins and Adil Ray on Good Morning Britain and revealed she cannot live in her dream home because the man convicted of stalking her still lives next door
‘It took a while, but I recognized over-friendliness and too much interest in me, boundaries were crossed.
“The bigger the line I imposed, the more I tried to withdraw, the angrier he got.”
Isla went on to tell a terrifying story of how her stalker climbed over her garden wall and then entered her house to offer her a sandwich shortly after moving into her home in Wiltshire.
She said: “I actually wrote a thank you card for his partner to read because I was like, ‘this is weird, how can I let her know this is happening because you’re not going to call the police and say my neighbor made a sandwich for me’.’
The presenter continued: ‘Victims of stalking are at risk of being stalked until their stalker dies’, saying that ‘rehabilitation and therapy should be implemented’ to stop the abuse.
Barrett (pictured in his yard) climbed over her wall then went into her house to offer her a sandwich and soon she was unable to eat or sleep and was afraid to leave her house
“I’d rather he rob me every day because things can be replaced, but not your self-esteem and security.”
Barrett denied stalking or harassing his neighbor, even claiming that it was she who had become “fixed” on him.
But earlier this month he was ordered to perform 300 hours of community service and pay £715 in costs after being convicted of stalking Isla during a trial.
After the case, Isla demanded a complete overhaul of the way the justice system handles stalking cases and insisted that Barrett should have been jailed.
Isla requested to appear live at Salisbury Magistrates’ Court to personally describe the ‘devastating’ impact of Barrett’s actions
During the course, the host requested that he appear at Salisbury Magistrates’ Court via a live link to personally describe the “devastating” impact of Barrett’s actions.
Struggling to talk through her persistent tears, she said, “Writing this very short statement is one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to write.
“I usually write about other people, and I never thought I’d end up in this position.
“Since the beginning of 2021 I have been afraid and in a state of fear for my safety. It got so bad that I suddenly had to leave my house.
“My boyfriend’s husband came to pick me up late at night so I could sleep on their couch. Every aspect of my life has been negatively affected.
‘The insidious effect of’ [Barrett’s] erratic behavior to intimidate and cause fear has been devastating. His behavior has caused damage to my health and mental health.
“I am plagued with fear. I’ve been to some of the most dangerous places in the world, where I’ve met killers.
“But I’ve never felt so scared as in a remote house in the Wiltshire countryside.
“I didn’t feel safe leaving my house or walking my dog. I didn’t feel safe wearing certain clothes and didn’t even feel safe in my own home.
“I had no choice but to leave my beautiful home. I don’t see myself living in this house with this stalker living next door.”