A man named Timothy O’Brien, aged 55, has been sentenced to 17 weeks in jail for harassing a BBC weather presenter, Alexis Green, by sending her over 100 sexually explicit messages over the course of a month.
O’Brien, an avionic engineer from Bournemouth, Dorset, bombarded Green with messages praising her legs and clothing choices, as well as sending her inappropriate videos and pictures of himself.
Green described feeling physically sick and less confident in every aspect of her life as a result of the harassment, and even took time off work because of it.
O’Brien sent a total of 115 messages, 33 videos, and 13 photos to Green via Facebook messenger between December 2021 and January 2022.
In the videos, he told Green that he wanted to “feel her” and boasted about the size of his penis.
He also sent messages to Green saying that he wanted to have sex with her and that she should be on the news more often because of her nice legs.
During the trial, O’Brien pleaded guilty to a charge of harassment without violence.
Prosecuting attorney Bethany Adams described the content of the messages and videos as “rather unpleasant” and said that they included O’Brien asking Green if she liked his body and sending her pictures of his genitalia.
In addition to his jail sentence, O’Brien was also given a restraining order preventing him from contacting Green in any way and from attending her place of work at BBC South.
The court also ordered him to pay court costs totaling £154.
Green described feeling extremely anxious and in a constant state of alert, even when she was off-duty, as a result of O’Brien’s harassment.
She said that the experience had made her question whether her job was worth feeling that way about and that she had considered quitting the work she loved.
She also said that the ordeal had affected her private life and left her feeling like she was constantly looking over her shoulder.
O’Brien had previously had a successful career before separating from his wife and developing fixations with people, according to his lawyer, Mark Hensleigh.
Hensleigh said that O’Brien had thought that Green’s messages would be blocked because she was in the public domain, but they weren’t.
O’Brien apologized to Green through his lawyer and accepted that his messages were entirely inappropriate.