Man admits harassment of tv presenter


Anthony Wells has pleaded guilty at Basildon Crown Court to a charge of harassing tv presenter Rachel Riley. A further charge involving Coldplay's Chris Martin was left on file following consultation with him by CPS East of England.

CPS East of England Senior District Crown Prosecutor Punam Malhan said: "When Anthony Wells admitted harassing Rachel Riley at an earlier hearing we asked for an adjournment so we could seek the views of the other victim in this case, Chris Martin, on continuing with the charge which involved him.

"Mr Martin indicated that a plea to the charge involving Ms Riley would be acceptable to ensure that Mr Wells gets the medical help he needs and that he was content for us to not to proceed in relation to the remaining charge. Taking Mr Martin's view into account we decided it was no longer in the public interest to continue with the second charge of harassment and that charge was today left on file.

"Anthony Wells has been sentenced to a hospital order under sec 37 Mental Health Act and a restraining order was imposed for a period of five years with a prohibition not to contact Rachel Riley or Chris Martin. 

"Everyone should be able to go about their daily lives free from harassment caused by someone deliberately making offensive, violent messages about them on social media. We take allegations of this kind very seriously and especially where there is evidence of a course of conduct which causes fear or distress to someone, regardless of whether a victim is in the public eye or not."