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HomeLatest News"Delusional" rugby ref jailed

“Delusional” rugby ref jailed

Arthur Beddow, known as Tim, was described by the judge who sentenced him at Gloucester Crown Court recently as ‘personable and intelligent – but delusional.’
Beddow, 56, of Belgrave Road, Gloucester, was sentenced to a total of one year’s imprisonment – but has already spent four months on remand so he will be released in about two months’ time.

Beddow was also sentenced for flouting a court order to stay away from his own mother and brother, at their home in Cheltenham.

Passing sentence, Judge Rupert Lowe imposed a five-year restraining order barring Beddow from contacting a former neighbour or going to her home street, or to an adjoining street where she regularly uses the corner shop.

The judge had been told that Beddow’s neighbour tried to be a ‘good neighbour’ to him when he first moved into the flat above hers last year and she even invited him round for a roast dinner.

He then started to pursue her, asking her to be his girlfriend, and regularly banging on her door and telling her he loved her.

His neighbour became so concerned and scared by his behaviour that eventually she called the police.

Beddow denied a charge of stalking her, causing alarm or distress, but was convicted by Cheltenham Magistrates in January this year and was committed to the crown court to be sentenced.

At a separate jury trial at the crown court last month Beddow, who formerly lived in Cheltenham, had been convicted of twice breaching a county court restraining order banning him from going to his mother Mary’s home in St Michael’s Road, Cheltenham.

He had gone to the property in January and February 2023 during an ongoing dispute with his mother and brother over his claim that he is the legal owner of her house, the jury heard.

During his trial for those offences Beddow, who defended himself, told jurors he had served ’18 years as a community referee and am also on the board of the University.’

Prosecutor Ieuan Callaghan said: “He claimed in the county court that the house where his mother lives is in fact his – but on July 23rd 2022 a judge in the county court had dismissed that claim and a restraining order was made on 13th Oct 2022. It was to last for two years.

“One of the conditions was that he must not contact his brother directly or indirectly. Neither was he to enter the St Michael’s Road address.

“On 19th Feb last year he went to the property at about 11am and a neighbour saw him with a stepladder in the garden behind his mother’s house. He was using the ladder to peer over into his mother’s garden.

“Later, neighbours alerted his brother that the defendant was back. He was sitting on the wall opposite his mother’s property for some time. A Ring doorbell captured him sitting there.

“On 12th March at 6pm Mrs Beddow was reading in her living room. She got a call from her son to say that the defendant had broken into an outbuilding at her property.

“He was seen to use a brick to break wooden batons in the door. He then pushed out the glass pane and went into the annexe. The police were called, and he was arrested.

“The defendant accepted that he entered that part of the property but said he had a reasonable excuse for doing so. He said he was homeless, and he needed shelter and that is why he went there.

Beddow told the jury: “I could have pleaded guilty, but I didn’t because in my way of thinking I didn’t believe I had the motive or the inclination to break the law.

“I could have pleaded guilty and then your wonderful people wouldn’t have to be here. If your answer is Guilty, then so be it. Life will move on. Whatever will be will be. I am now in a much better place, and I am alive.”

“I could have pleaded guilty and then your wonderful people wouldn’t have to be here. If your answer is Guilty, then so be it. Life will move on. Whatever will be will be. I am now in a much better place, and I am alive.”

The trial judge, Recorder Richard Mawhinney, told the jury: “Mr Beddow is an intelligent man, but you may suspect that he suffers from some mental health difficulties or a degree of obsession or a lack of rational balance.”

At the crown court this week, Mr Callaghan told Judge Lowe that his neighbour first met Beddow when he was working as a maintenance man for the landlord of the flats where they both lived in Gloucester.

“She identified that he had issues, but she tried to be nice to him and she even invited him round for a roast dinner she was preparing for a friend,” said the prosecutor. “In the end the friend did not attend, and it was just her and Mr Beddow.

“He started to make comments about her becoming his girlfriend, but she told him ‘That’s never going to happen!’ He said: ‘You just don’t know it yet.’

“This led to him stalking her. He would go to the back door of her flat on multiple days. He would bang the door and she would try to ignore it.”

Police were called on one occasion and removed him from the scene, but Beddow kept returning, banging her door and shouting that he loved her, said Mr Callaghan. Police called and spoke to Beddow but his harassment of the victim continued and eventually he was arrested after she was told he had been threatening to ‘do’ her.

Mr Callaghan said that since Beddow’s arrest and detention his neighbour has continued to worry about what will happen when he is released.

The court heard that Beddow has made eleven previous court appearances for a total of 14 harassment, assault and driving offences since 2004.

In 2022 he was convicted of punching a young woman in the face when she intervened in an argument between him and two Morrisons supermarket staff about the Covid mask-wearing restrictions that were then in place in the store.

Barrister Naomi Aylwin, representing Beddow at the crown court this week, said: “He has been making progress while in custody with his alcohol problems and he accepts that he is not yet ready to be released.

“Regarding the breaches of the restraining order concerning his mother and brother there is a very long-standing property dispute which is sadly tearing this family apart.”

Judge Lowe interjected: “He insists he owns this house, but he doesn’t.
He won’t stop – he gets these ideas in his head, and he goes on and on and on and on and it is frightening for people.

“He is an intelligent man, and he has had a better past, some time ago, but unfortunately he doesn’t really recognise how unhinged his behaviour and beliefs are.”

Passing sentence, the judge told Beddow: “You have made it impossible to avoid sending you to prison. I think you are a little delusional, and you have got a problem with alcohol. You won’t listen to other people, and you see the world in your own way

“Your neighbour showed you kindness, but you made her life hell. If you keep losing your temper and being horrible to people you will be back in prison again and that would be a real shame.”

The judge passed sentences totalling one year’s imprisonment. He made a five-year restraining order banning Beddow from contacting his neighbour in any way or going to her home street and an adjacent road where she shops.

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