After months of allegedly searching random motels and properties for his ex-girlfriend, who had an intervention order out against him, a Wangaratta man was arrested following a three-hour standoff with police in a dam.
David Johnson, 39, was this week refused bail on stalking charges after police told Wangaratta Magistrates Court he was a danger to the community.
He had been released from jail in August, then allegedly reoffended in September by knocking on random doors and looking through windows of Wangaratta motels in search of his ex-girlfriend and their child.
Detective Senior Constable Guy Mitchell told the court the woman was scared of him because he was controlling, aggressive and had made threats of violence in the past.
People who had seen Johnson in September and October had described his behaviour as "bizarre" and "erratic" and they believed he was using drugs.
Detective Mitchell said Johnson had a history of methamphetamine addiction.
Johnson allegedly painted purple and green graffiti on the door of a friend who had been trying to help him.
He also called his ex-girlfriend's previous number 17 times between August and September.
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Johnson was first caught in someone else's house on September 13 when he allegedly entered the unlocked back door of a Wangaratta home where an elderly couple were inside.
He tried to shake the man's hand and told him that someone was out the front, before he left and went next door, where those occupants called triple zero.
A month later, while staying at the Wangaratta South home of former Tramps Motorcycle Club president Ronnie Harding, Johnson allegedly again entered three other people's properties.
When police arrived this time, he fled on foot.
"He then entered a dam at this location to avoid being arrested," Detective Mitchell said.
"The accused remained in the dam without consent from the owner for several hours tying up a huge amount of resources including police air-wing, search and rescue squad, local police units, the SES and Ambulance Victoria at what would have been an enormous financial cost"
He said Johnson's drug addiction made him unpredictable.
"He's arousing apprehension and fear in people who come in contact with him," Detective Mitchell said.
"He poses a real threat to the community for the propensity to randomly enter people's homes and yards.
"He has a long history and if confronted by the wrong person I believe he would resort to violence."
Johnson was remanded to stay in custody and will return to court in January.