Senior King’s Lynn hospital boss guilty of stalking

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A senior executive from Lynn’s Queen Elizabeth Hospital has been convicted of stalking and witness intimidation in relation to a series of poison pen letters written about a colleague.

A jury at Lynn Crown Court has unanimously found Karl Perryman guilty of both counts this afternoon, following just over three hours of deliberations.

Perryman, 52. of Elvington, Springwood estate, Gaywood, repeatedly shook his head after the verdicts were delivered.

Sentencing has been adjourned until next month, but judge Nicholas Coleman warned him a prison sentence was inevitable.

He said: “I’m quite sure that you will continue to deny the allegations but I am satisfied the jury are entirely right in their decisions.”

He added that the only question relating to Perryman’s sentence is how long he will be jailed for.

The verdicts follow a two-week trial in which Perryman, the hospital’s head of legal services, denied sending a series of letters about a complaints manager, Joanne O’Neill, and intimidating her mother, Margeret Titmarsh.

Prosecuting barrister Jude Durr said there had been a “significant degree of planning” and effort to conceal his true identity in Perryman’s conduct.

He said Mrs Titmarsh had made “significant changes” to her life since the incident in a bid to avoid coming into Lynn at all.

And, of Ms O’Neill, he said the case had had a “devastating effect” on her life and health.

He said: “She has moved more than 200 miles away from her family, from her job and from all her friends to avoid contact with this defendant.”

Eloise Emanuel, for Perryman, asked for an adjournment so that defence barrister Susannah Stevens, who has represented him throughout the trial, could offer more detailed mitigation.

She also pointed out that Perryman was a man of previously good character.

Perryman was released on bail for a sentencing hearing on April 17. A report will be prepared before that hearing.

The judge said Perryman would be electronically tagged and would have to remain at his home between 7pm and 7am each day.

An interim restraining order has also been imposed.

In a statement issued after the verdicts were announced, Gerry Dryden, the hospital’s director of human resources, said: “The Trust acknowledges the verdict of the court in respect of its employee Karl Perryman.

“The Trust will now carefully consider the verdict and take such steps as it considers appropriate in the circumstances.

“It would be inappropriate for the Trust to comment further on this case at this time.”