62-yr-old man who never got over high school sweetheart stalks her after tracking her down 50 years later
Everard Cunion, a software engineer, was arrested after it became clear that he went jogging past Julie Taylor's house every day and even followed a woman who looked like her
A 62-year-old man who never got over his childhood sweetheart has been convicted of stalking her 50 years after they last saw each other. He also lives with nine dolls at his house and controversially married one in 2012.
Everard Cunion tried to track down Julie Taylor and rekindle his friendship with her earlier this year. He claims that losing his job made him re-evaluate what was important in life. He researched births, deaths and marriage registers in order to find Taylor, who he had not seen since 1972.
Cunion also managed to turn up at her old family home where her 88-year-old mother Georgina Allen still lived. Cunion was told to leave, but he went on to send eight letters addressed to Taylor.
Taylor did not respond to his letters but she and her mother became concerned when Cunion made a joke about kidnapping her in one such letter. She went on to report the software engineer to the police after it became clear that he went jogging past her mother's house every day over a four-month period and even followed a woman he thought might be Taylor.
Cunion initially denied his behavior could be called harassment but later admitted to stalking Taylor and harassing her mother.
Cunion will be sentenced next month but was told by magistrates to stay away from the family. Cunion later said he felt "stupid" over the matter. "I upset her (Taylor) when I was at school and it's haunted me for 50 years. I was determined to try to find out if she was okay but clearly I alarmed her," he said.
"I wanted to find a way of making it up to her. Girls have to be able to reject guys they don't want and those guys have to accept that. For some reason, I have not really been able to. It's a shame and I do feel really stupid about the whole thing," he added.
Lee Turner, prosecuting, explained Cunion's unrequited love for the 62-year-old Taylor began when he went to school with her between 1968 and 1972. Turner said: "They last saw each other on the last day of school in 1972. He wrote a letter to her in the early 1970s but it didn't reach her as her mother burnt it and, in 1978, she received a letter from him but disposed of it and didn't reply."
"In May this year, he went to the old family home and the door was answered by her 88-year-old mother," Turner said. "He started asking questions about her daughter and she immediately recognized him as the male who used to have an infatuation with her daughter at school. He tried to give her a letter but she said no and shut the door. A couple of days later post arrived addressed to Julie Allen, her maiden name, detailing how much he wanted to get in touch. He sent a further seven letters in May, June, July, August and September."
"He made reference to some gates that the mother had only just had installed and she started worrying he was watching the property. The letters started off short and over time became lengthier and more rambled. The fifth letter, in August, caused her to phone the police as he made reference to wanting to kidnap her. It was written in a light-hearted way saying his kidnapping days were done but it caused her alarm."
"He also made reference to having researched her and knew little-known private details. In a letter in September, he detailed an incident where he followed a female leaving the address on foot, believing it was Julie - it wasn't. She never replied to any letters,' Turner concluded.
James Moore, defending, told Poole Magistrates' Court that Cunion never posed a threat to Taylor or her mother.
Moore said: "Redundancy caused him to take stock of his life and all he wanted to do was see if he could rekindle a friendship with her. He realises that is not going to happen and since his arrest he hasn't engaged in any behavior like this with Julie or her mother. He only attended the address on two occasions and thereafter posted letters."
"He made a joke (about kidnapping) because he was trying to build a rapport. There was no malice on his part but he accepts he might have been over the top. He doesn't oppose a restraining order and is keen to draw a close to the matter," he added.
District judge Stephen Nicholls adjourned the case for pre-sentence reports. He released Cunion on bail on condition that he does not contact either of the women, go to their home or research any material relating to them.