Stalker who hid in victim's cupboard called her 128 times from prison

Gavin Eyles was sentenced to two years and eight months in prison and made subject of a 10-year restraining order. Credit: Gloucestershire Police

A stalker who called his ex-partner more than 100 times from prison has been jailed for two years and eight months.

Gavin Eyles - who previously lived in Chippenham, Wiltshire - controlled his victim to the extent she had to ask permission before doing daily tasks like having a shower or choosing what to wear.

After their relationship ended, the 39-year-old continued to try to make unwanted contact with her and on one occasion he hid in the victim's cupboard in her home.

While on remand in prison, Eyles also phoned the victim 128 times.

On Tuesday (February 8) Eyles admitted coercive and controlling behaviour and stalking the victim at Gloucester Crown Court and was sentenced to two years and eight months in prison.

He was made subject of a 10-year restraining order which means he can not contact the victim and is also banned from entering Gloucestershire.

Eyles had been on remand in prison for the offences prior to his plea hearing. Due to the time he had already spent in prison on remand, he has almost already served his entire sentence.

Speaking after the sentencing, his victim described the experience as "earth-shattering".

She said: "Stalking is not just someone stood under a light outside your house, it's small subtle events such as texts, calls, flowers at your door, streaming sites you watch being hacked and monitored. It's invasive and scary.

"Without reporting it I feel so many others experiencing stalking can become lost, confused and unsure if they are at risk, feeling they won’t be believed or taken seriously. But believe me they will.

"If anyone, for any reason, feels they are ever not safe or something isn’t right I implore them to speak out. The more awareness of this there is, the more chance these individuals can be stopped and people can be safe."

Detective Inspector Angela Middlewood said his "persistent and obsessive behaviour" was a controlling form of abuse. 

"His despicable actions caused a significant amount of distress and harm to the victim, and I would like to commend her for her courage and continued strength throughout what has been a horrific ordeal.

"I hope that the outcome of this case and restraining order will offer the victim some closure and reassurance."

The Independent Stalking Advocacy Caseworker (ISAC) for Gloucestershire worked directly with the victim and said it has "affected every area of her life".

"As a result of her bravery and tenacity, Eyles has finally been convicted of coercive control and stalking.

"These convictions are now on his record - it means any other woman who may consider entering a relationship with Eyles can be aware of his history and make an informed choice by making a Clare’s Law application."

What is Clare's Law and how can you use it?

Clare's Law is a scheme which allows the police to disclose information to someone if they are believed to be at risk of domestic abuse.

Any member of the public has the right to ask the police if their partner may pose a risk. Friends and family can also make an application.

Clare Wood's brutal murder was the prompt for the namesake law. Credit: PA

The law is named after Clare Wood, who was strangled and set on fire by her ex-boyfriend George Appleton, who had a secret violent past.

More information from Gloucestershire Police about submitting a Clare's Law application can be found here.

Stalking and harassment can be reported on the police's website or by calling 101. In an emergency always call 999. If you're not sure if you're being stalked, contact the Suzy Lamplugh Trust or call 0808 802 0300.