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Dentist stalker jailed for breaking restraining order

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image captionThomas Baddeley, from Bristol, was described as "obsessed" with his former dentist, Ian Hutchinson

A man who secretly stalked his dentist for years has been jailed for two years after breaching a restraining order.

Thomas Baddeley, from Bristol, was previously jailed for 16 months after being found with a "murder kit" near the home of Ian Hutchinson.

It contained items including a large knife, a crossbow with bolts, bleach and a hammer.

Baddeley was released in September, but was arrested outside Dr Hutchinson's surgery in Monmouthshire weeks later.

Speaking after Baddeley was imprisoned again on Thursday, Dr Hutchinson said the sentencing laws for stalking were "woefully inadequate" and "completely crazy".

"Somebody can stalk someone for four years, methodically plan how they are going to kidnap them... torture them... murder them... and dispose of the body and DNA," he said.

"They can end up serving six months of a 16-month sentence and get a restraining order, and within two months of being released they've broken it."

He added: "It's just completely crazy, how many alarm bells have to be ringing before anyone takes action."

image copyrightJames C
image captionBaddeley was arrested after he chained his bicycle to a lamppost and began walking in the direction of Dr Hutchinson's surgery

On Thursday, Cardiff Crown Court heard Baddeley's "obsession" with Dr Hutchinson began when he became unhappy about dental treatment he had received between 2012 and 2016.

He became convinced the braces he had been fitted with were poisoning him by allowing water to get into his gums.

His complaints became "increasingly bizarre" and when Baddeley's treatment ended, Dr Hutchinson expected a complaint from him - but it never came.

He had been arrested near Dr Hutchinson's home in November 2019, wearing a balaclava and carrying what was described in court as a "murder kit", with his car seats covered in plastic sheeting.

image copyrightGwent Police
image captionA crossbow was among the weapons found in Thomas Baddeley's car in 2019

Documents found at Baddeley's home and in his car revealed he had been following the dentist since a few months before his treatment ended.

Detailed plans leading up to something described as "the event" were also found.

Baddeley answered "no comment" to police questioning and offered no explanation for what "the event" referred to.

In August, Baddeley was jailed for 16 months at Cardiff Crown Court for two charges of possessing offensive weapons, and for a lesser charge of stalking without fear, alarm or distress due to Dr Hutchinson not being aware of Baddeley's actions.

A psychological report concluded that "autistic traits" displayed by Baddeley might explain his fixation.

Baddeley was released immediately after sentencing at Newport Crown Court due to his guilty pleas and time served on remand.

The judge had imposed an extensive, indefinite restraining order on him, including a ban on entering parts of Monmouthshire.

media caption"I'm a victim but feel like an inconvenience"

But on 7 October, a police officer saw Baddeley near Dr Hutchinson's surgery in Chepstow.

The officer, who was aware of the restraining order, noted Baddeley was riding a bike and had made efforts to disguise himself.

Baddeley was returned to prison after being arrested as he approached the surgery.

In a victim impact statement, Dr Hutchinson said knowledge of Baddeley's actions had a "profound effect" on him, both personally and professionally.

His long-term partner had left him and his family were fearful for their own safety as well as his, he added.

DC Ceri Parker of Gwent Police said: "No person should have to live with the fear associated with the offence of stalking as Baddeley's victim has."

Related Topics

  • Bristol
  • Chepstow
  • Stalking

More on this story

  • 'Obsessed' dentist stalker found outside surgery