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stalking regret Armagh man who harassed woman with marriage proposals 'went off rails' after wife's death

John Murray of Victoria Park in Armagh was also caught drink driving two days in a row and damaging two vehicles.

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Liverpool fan John Murray was ordered to do community service after he was found to have  who sent unsolicited flowers, letters and marriage proposals to a female friend

Liverpool fan John Murray was ordered to do community service after he was found to have who sent unsolicited flowers, letters and marriage proposals to a female friend

Liverpool fan John Murray was ordered to do community service after he was found to have who sent unsolicited flowers, letters and marriage proposals to a female friend

A man convicted of harassing a woman by repeatedly sending flowers, love letters and wedding proposals says he went "off the rails" after his wife died.

John Murray of Victoria Park in Armagh was also caught drink driving two days in a row and damaging two vehicles.

This week, he told the Sunday World he had accepted full responsibility for everything he had done and vowed to turn his life around.

"Hopefully I've left it all behind me, I had a terrible year last year after my wife died," he explained.

"In November, everything just fell apart and I went off the rails. I totally regret everything that happened, and I take full responsibility.

"For a period I had been blaming her, but I now know it was all my fault. I accept that now. I just want to leave it all behind me and move on."

In March, the 54-year-old was ordered to serve community service and probation after breaching a non-molestation order.

He was convicted at Armagh Magistrates Court of seven counts of breaching a non-molestation order and harassment after a woman had complained that over a three-week period last December she had received numerous letters and flowers from the defendant.

In these letters, Murray wrote that he loved her and asked for her to marry him.

She stated that the defendant had also sent her a friend request on Facebook and messaged her through this service.

The unwanted flowers and letters were sent on a total of six occasions and Murray was subsequently arrested for breaching a non-molestation order.

He stated that it was not his intention to pester or intimidate the woman but to "profess his love" and ask her to marry him.

In January, police received a report of a further breach of the non-molestation order in relation to the same injured party.

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She stated that on January 11, Murray had sent her unsolicited messages via text, WhatsApp and the dating app Badoo.

She said these messages had left her feeling pestered and harassed.

Deputy District Judge Philip Mateer sentenced Murray to an enhanced combination order consisting of 100 hours' community service and 12 months' probation.

A week after that case was dealt with, Murray was back before the same court for the drink drive offences which happened last November, a few weeks before the harassment offending.

Murray pleaded guilty to nine charges including being in charge whilst unfit, driving whilst unfit, driving without due care or attention, two counts of failing to stop, two counts of failing to remain and two counts of failing to report an accident.

Prosecution outlined that on November 24 police received a report of a male, suspected of being under the influence, driving erratically in the vicinity of St Patrick's Park, Armagh.

Officers arrived to find the vehicle in question, a Toyota RAV 4, stationary with its ignition running and Murray's speech was slurred.

The following day at 3.40pm, police received a report of a road traffic collision on Edward Street in Armagh.

Officers spoke to the reporting person by telephone. She claimed that her ex-partner - the defendant - had collided with the rear offside wheel arch of her Volkswagen Golf before making off.

Police also received a report of a second road traffic collision which occurred on the Cathedral Road in the city.

The reporting person stated that the driver of a RAV 4 had collided with the side of their Mercedes vehicle before making off.

Police later located Murray on Thomas Street and it was noted that he appeared unsteady on his feet.

Officers arrested the defendant, with him replying after caution: "I admit to all of that and I will pay for all of the damages."

Murray's solicitor stated: "Following the death of his wife, he began a relationship with another woman which subsequently broke down causing Mr Murray to act out of character.

"In both charges he made full admissions to police. The inevitable loss of his licence will have an impact on him."

Deputy District Judge Philip Mateer said: "It would appear you may have had a difficult time with a relationship but that is no excuse."

Murray was disqualified from driving for three years and was ordered to pay a fine of £900.

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