Stranger stalked family claiming adult children were his
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A family has been subjected to three years of ‘relentless and bizarre’ behaviour from a man who formed the ‘ludicrous’ belief that three siblings were his biological children.
For reasons unknown, Robert Innes, of Whitland, formed the idea in 2020 that a young woman he claims to have seen on a bus was his daughter.
Since then, he has carried out a campaign of stalking, intimidating, and trying to contact her and her family, convinced she and her two siblings were taken from him through the foster care system many years ago.
The 52-year-old has this week appeared in court, where Dyfed-Powys Police successfully applied for an indefinite Stalking Protection Order, safeguarding the family from his behaviour.
The force’s litigation lawyer Sue Clarke said: “This is a very unusual case, in which there are four victims – a mother and her three adult children.
“While Innes is a complete stranger to all of them, he formed the notion that the three children are biologically his, and that they were taken from him. He believes their biological mother to be someone else entirely, that he had a relationship with many years ago.
“His behaviour has put the family in fear, and we were determined to explore all options to safeguard them.”
An interim stalking protection order was put in place at Llanelli Magistrates’ Court on October 26, however Dyfed-Powys Police asked the court to consider an order with no end, which was granted on Thursday, December 14.
The court heard that Innes approached social services in 2020, asking for help in contacting a young woman he had seen on a bus who he had a ‘strong feeling’ was his adopted birth child.
In March the following year, he turned up at the family home, claiming to be a private detective looking for someone he said had been adopted 21 years previously.
What followed was a series of stalking behaviour, with Innes not only going to the mother’s home and workplace, but approaching neighbours and colleagues for information about the family.
Mrs Clarke added: “The eldest daughter has been the main focus of his attention, but all four family members have been stalked and targeted either physically or online.
“He has written letters and turned up with gifts, posed as a social worker – complete with lanyard – when approaching a neighbour for information about the family, and followed the eldest daughter relentlessly, even turning up behind her in a cinema queue.
“A neighbour also reported being visited by three young men ‘on behalf of Bob’ which left her feeling scared and intimidated.”
A statement from the mother explained the fear Innes has brought to her family.
“He seems very resourceful and imaginative,” she said. “He is a big man and although so far has not posed a physical threat, I worry that the more frustrated his attempts at contacting are, the more chance he may change his behaviour and attitude.
“He knows where my son lives, where I live and work, and he may get lucky extracting contact details for my daughters.”
In granting the indefinite stalking protection order, District Judge Layton referred to the “ludicrous claim that he is the father of these children” and described his interest in the eldest sibling as “unhealthy”.
If you need to report domestic abuse, stalking or harassment, you can contact Dyfed-Powys Police in the following ways:
If you are deaf, hard of hearing, or speech impaired text the non-emergency number on 07811 311 908
In an emergency, always call 999.
*If you feel you need support in contacting police, there are organisations that can help you. Click here to find them, or search online for Live Fear Free, Women’s Aid or the National Stalking Helpline – all of which have free helplines available.