A Christian who spent FIVE YEARS stalking a clergyman’s daughter told police that God was telling him to do it, MKCITIZEN reports.
The 26-year-old who repeatedly ignored court orders to stop him harassing the church pastor’s daughter, is today starting a two year jail sentence for his sins.
A judge listened to the stalker’s claims that his actions were God’s wish and advised him to speak to a chaplain in prison – because he would then find out God did not want him to plague the young woman.
Insurance broker Ayobami Adeyemi had started worshipping at CMK’s Church of Christ the Cornerstone in 2016 and it was not long before Grace Akingbade, who was helping her pastor father organise religious events, caught his eye.
In a bid to get closer to Ms Akingbade, with whom he became obsessed, the defendant started trying to befriend Father Emmanuel. But he found the pastor did not approve of him courting his daughter.
Adeyemi, who believed he had been instructed by God to court Ms Akingbade, began a five year campaign of harassment which saw him before a criminal court seven times for 16 offences, all committed against the clergyman’s daughter.
Prosecuting, Chris Hewertson said: “These offences were committed on March 30, the last in a persistent cycle of breaches of a restraining order, imposed in 2017 in relation to Grace Akingbade.”
“Her father, Emmanuel was a pastor in the church which convenes in Milton Keynes, often using primary school facilities and similar buildings. In around 2016, Mr Adeyemi became a member of the congregation of her father’s church.”
“He showed, by various manifestations, a lot of interest in her. It was plain that he developed an affection that was not reciprocated. She made plain she did not seek contact in those terms or indeed in any terms. That is what gave rise to a restraining order on June 14 2016.”
“It is a harrowing history from the eyes of Ms Akingbade. As one goes through the incident record, this is the 10th actual breach of that order. This has been the better part of five years, through her young 20s, of living with that level of interference, harassment, stalking and breaches of orders repeatedly once they are made.”
In July 2018, Adeyemi had been jailed for 12 months but was only released in March this year, as he was held by immigration authorities, as he was a Nigerian national who had moved to the UK in 2008.
Within four days of being released, Adeyemi was arrested after knocking at the front door of Ms Akingbade’s home address, which was known to him, in an area of MK close to the church.
Mr Hewertson said: “It was a worrying feature, he had never been to her address and it was to that extent a factual escalation. Her father opened the door and answered, saying ‘what are you doing here, what do you want? Do you realise that is not right, you should not be here.”
“He responded, ‘I know’. The defendant later said to police, ‘God told me to do it’. That very much has been his reaction and justification for the entirety, or the great preponderance of these breaches. He said he felt compelled by God to seek out Grace in those terms.”
Adeyemi had never committed any acts of violence or sexual offences against his victim, the court heard, but his behaviour had been alarming for his victim and had become more frightening with each repeat.
In a victim impact statement, Ms Akingbade said: “I was scared. He has never come to the house before, it is a new height. I was really scared, I worried that the police could not come soon enough, I just did not know what might happen.”
“I feel frustrated and powerless that he can continue to do this and the system is failing me. I often get anxious when I think of him, which means I cannot focus on what I am doing.”
“When this started I just wanted him to receive help for him to get better and now I just want it to stop, for him to leave me and my family alone.”
Adeyemi had admitted harassment and the breach of a restraining order and had been sent to Aylesbury Crown Court to be sentenced.
The court heard he had been of good character and was working as an insurance broker after leaving school before he met Ms Akingbade, but had since been diagnosed with a delusional disorder.
Josh Normanton, defending Adeyemi, said: “This is someone who is suffering with a problem he finds very difficult to overcome, someone who is suffering from an obsession with which they do not wish to continue, but cannot stop because they feel they are being spoken to by a higher power and told to do certain things.”
Judge Thomas Rochford, sentencing Adeyemi over a digital hearing, said the offences were so serious that he could not impose another hospital order or community order, because he feared the defendant would continue stalking his victim.
The judge told Adeyemi: “You met your victim at a church where her father was a pastor. It is clear that you had very strong feelings towards that young lady and you dealt at first in a way by speaking to her father and such like, but it was clear to you from a very early stage that neither she not her father were encouraging your interest, but you did not take the message.”
“I hope you do take an opportunity to seek some spiritual advice from a pastor or the chaplain in prison and ask whether God is telling you to really go on making her life difficult.”
“She is a good woman and her father is a good man and if they are not interested in you then perhaps God will not want you to be involved. I hope that will be the message you will get from a Chaplain. It is certainly the message you have got from the courts and I give you. You have to stay away from her.”
Judge Rochford jailed Adeyemi for two years.