Guilty woman plans to appeal

An Eglingham woman who was found guilty of using threatening words/behaviour to cause harassment, alarm or distress says she will appeal against the verdict.

Valerie Dexter, 56, has been ordered to pay £500 prosecution costs and was given a two-year conditional discharge.

Dexter, of The Village, had become frustrated at Northumberland County Council agents regularly ‘trespassing’ on her land while they were calling on one of her neighbours.

She said that shortly after making a formal request to the authority for it to stop, worker Eamonn Ryan parked on her property.

Frustrated Dexter moved her bins close to his vehicle, impounding it, and demanded he pay for it to be released.

She told the magistrates’ court in Bedlington last Thursday that she had no intention of causing him distress in the May 24 incident, claiming instead that she was the one who was distressed by the frequent incidents of ‘trespass’.

Dexter was arrested at the scene and she told the court that she had been assaulted by a police officer.

But District Judge Stephen Earl said that Mr Ryan was unaware of the previous issues and not at fault.

He criticised Dexter’s ‘out of proportion’ approach as she didn’t have carte blanche to exercise her rights, said she was abusive and the arrest was lawful.


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