Arrest over stalker calls

BORDER women who received harassing phone calls and text messages after placing newspaperadvertisements have expressed relief after Wagga police arrested a man on Thursday afternoon.

Constable Jason Maybury arrested a man, 45, on Thursday, charging him with 21 counts of using a carriage service to menace, harass or offend.

The man was bailed to appear before the Wagga Local Court on April 10.

Police allege women aged 16 to 82 who placed advertisements in the classifieds section of newspapers, including The Border Mail, about items for sale or lost property had been “preyed on”.

Police said text messages were sent initially responding to the advertisements before “menacing” messages of a “sexual nature” were sent.

They also alleged the victims were asked for sexual favours in exchange for lost items.

Police said investigations were continuing and further charges were expected to be laid.

Albury mother Kim, who did not want to give her full name, placed an advertisement in The Border Mail to sell a school uniform.

She said she had received a phone call and text messages asking her for a photo with the school uniform on.

“We’re just so relieved. Absolutely relieved,” Kim said about Thursday’s arrest.

Table Top mother Annie placed an advertisement in The Border Mail asking for the return of a lost document box.

She received several phone calls and text messages that asked her to meet for sex.

Annie, who also did not want to use her full name, said she was glad the ordeal was over.

“I really started to panic. I was dreading it,” she said.

“My husband was away, I was by myself living in the middle of a paddock.

“I was really nervy about it and I’m extremely relieved,” she said.

Shae Reuss was among three Border real estate agents who received hundreds of text messages and phone calls after their advertisements appeared in the paper.

“It’s good to see something’s happened,” Ms Reuss, 29, said.

“It’s a relief.”