Stalked woman's anguished statement after obsessed man is jailed in Manchester

stalker grainger
Obsessed: Grainger was jailed for stalking a woman he met at university in Manchester Credit: Grreater Manchester Police

A woman stalked by a man she met at university in Manchester says she still feels like he is torturing her every night - after he was jailed for two and a half years.

Grainger, 22, of Trillick, County Tyrone, in Northern Ireland, targeted the woman over a three-month period on 2019.

He was also given an indefinite stalking prevention order when he appeared before Manchester Crown Court.

The court heard Grainger had previously been friends with the 21-year-old woman while studying together at university, but when the friendship deteriorated, he began to send a barrage threatening messages from several anonymous accounts.

The messages continued for three months from September 2019, and included threats to harm and kill, as well as pictures of the victim's home address. Grainger was also seen near to the victim's address on multiple occasions.

Grainger, who had been working as film-maker, was arrested and following searches of his phone, images of the victim and her home address were found, and he was subsequently charged.

Grainger's phone revealed disturbing images Credit: ITV News

The woman targeted by Grainger, who hasn't been named for legal reasons, said in her Victim Impact Statement: "I never felt safe. I still don’t feel safe. I still jump every time my phone rings. I still feel sick every time I get a message from an unknown account.

"I still have a panic attack every time I see someone who looks like him. I still can’t even step foot on a bus, thinking he might be there watching me

"I have constant nightmares about him – about him attacking me, hurting me. They started a couple of weeks after the messages started and they haven’t stopped. Even now, every single night I am woken up by him. Every single night he is torturing me again."


Stalking and harassment is when someone repeatedly behaves in a way that makes you feel scared, distressed or threatened.

There are different types of stalking and harassment and anyone can be a victim. 

Stalking and harassment are offences under the Protection from Harassment Act 1997.

The FOUR signs to look out for are:

FixatedObsessiveUnwantedRepeated

Stalking is like harassment, but more aggressive. The stalker will have an obsession with the person they are targeting.

People are often targeted by someone they know - an ex-partner or a person they were friends with, or it might be a stranger.

Stalking may include:

  • regularly following someone

  • repeatedly going uninvited to their home

  • checking someone’s internet use, email or other electronic communication

  • hanging around somewhere they know the person often visits

  • interfering with their property

  • watching or spying on someone

  • identity theft (signing-up to services, buying things in someone's name)

It is classed as stalking if the unwanted behaviour has happened more than once.

SOURCE: Police.uk


Detective Constable Thomas Small, of Longsight CID, said: “Stalking can have a devastating effect on a victim and their loved ones, and I hope this sentencing shows that we take any reports of stalking and harassment seriously, and is committed to bringing anyone found responsible to justice.

“Everyone has the right to live their life without fear and harassment, and Grainger made that impossible for this young woman. 

“I would urge any victims of stalking or harassment to please take that brave step and report it to us. In an emergency call 999, in a non-emergency or to report an incident that has already happened, contact us via LiveChat on our website www.gmp.police.uk, or ring 101.

National agencies such as Suzy Lamplugh and Paladin can also provide you with advice and support."

There is a charity named after Suzy Lamplugh, an estate agent who disappeared in 1986 Credit: ITV News

There is a dedicated Victim Services Team available through www.gmvictims.org.uk or you can call 0161 200 1950. Anyone who has been a victim of crime is able to access this service regardless of whether you have reported it to police.

VICTIM IMPACT STATEMENT IN FULL

"I’ve tried for a long time to put into words exactly how I have felt since all of this has happened to me. I didn’t realise how long it would take me to accept that I am never going to recover from any of it. As much as I’ve tried, no matter how hard I try, everything I do links back to something relating to this case.

"It has been just over two years now since I received the first threatening message from one of Grainger’s many fake accounts. At first, I ignored them, hoping it was just some sort of spam account. But they kept coming, one by one, multiple in an hour, all from different accounts, for the next three months. It got so regular, that every time I would block an account, within five minutes, there would be a new one. I would wake up and have several different accounts messaging me, all with multiple messages. I could barely have a chance to breathe before there would be another.

"Every time I would hear a phone ring, I would start crying, or shaking, at the fear that it might be for me. It didn’t matter if it was in real life or if it was on a TV show or a film – whenever I heard a phone ring, I would have a panic attack. Even if it was just a vibration. But it wasn’t just the fear of getting a message that was the issue, it was the fear of what those messages said.

"Those messages, each one of them tore a different piece of my confidence away. They made me feel the ugliest I have ever felt. It didn’t matter how small the comment was, it made me feel smaller and smaller every single day, until I felt so small that I didn’t even want to leave my bedroom.

"I couldn’t do anything. Everything I did he was watching, and he was following. I would have multiple panic attacks everywhere I went. Anytime I saw anyone who looked remotely similar I would cry uncontrollably thinking it was him.

"I never felt safe. I still don’t feel safe. I still jump every time my phone rings. I still feel sick every time I get a message from an unknown account. I still have a panic attack every time I see someone who looks like him. I still can’t even step foot on a bus, thinking he might be there watching me

"I have constant nightmares about him – about him attacking me, hurting me. They started a couple of weeks after the messages started and they haven’t stopped. Even now, every single night I am woken up by him. Every single night he is torturing me again."