A man who bombarded his ex partner with messages, leaving her too terrified to leave the house, has admitted stalking her.

Anthony Penton showered Laura Steer with thousands of unwanted messages, making her life a misery.

He turned up at her home, threw stones at her window and on one occasion even approached her son.

Yesterday Penton was issued with a 12-month restraining order banning him from contacting Ms Steer.

Redditch Magistrates Court was told that the couple had had an off/on relationship since 2008, but had separated in November 2018.

After that Penton, of Fulbrook Close, Church Hill, began sending the woman numerous and unwanted messages.

Between September 1 last year and January 10 this year the 53-year-old sent thousands of messages to Ms Steer.

The court heard on one day for example, on December 29, Penton sent her six messages throughout the day, all with kisses at the end.

His messages would include requests to meet up.

Penton was repeatedly asked to stop, but ignored the desperate requests and continued to plague Ms Steer.

As well as sending thousands of texts Penton turned up and her family home and shouted through the letter box late at night, he also threw stones at her window, and one occasion even approached her son.

Navinda Gill, prosecuting, said that Ms Steer felt Penton was “unpredictable”.

“The complainant has said she thought he was watching her house and that it has made her scared to leave the house," she said.

“She fears she would not be able to run away from Mr Penton if he approached her while she was out due to her failing health, brought about by stress and anxiety.”

In mitigation Paul Stanley, defending, said it had been a long-term on/off relationship and that Penton used the texts as a way to stop himself feeling lonely.

He added Penton had not worked in while because of his health, following a nasty assault in 2016 which had deeply affected him.

Penton was given a restraining order not to contact Ms Steer or to enter a named road in Redditch for 12 months.

He was ordered to pay a fine of £80, £100 compensation, £185 court costs, and a £90 victim surcharge.

He was also given a community order for 12 months, including 25 rehabilitation days.