A JEALOUS stalker forced his way into his ex-wife’s home, climbed into her bed and refused to leave.

Stephen Norsworthy launched a campaign of “fixated” abuse of the woman in Lancing.

The 54-year-old was told the relationship was over when he lied about using her credit card to buy painkillers to feed his addiction.

But he would not let go, and stalked her in the shadows outside her home and left her suffering “mental torture”.

On one occasion he demanded to be let inside to “have a fight” because he falsely believed she was “cheating” on him with another man.

Norsworthy’s own daughter said she overheard how he wanted to “take everything from her” and “destroy her”.

At Lewes Crown Court, he was given a suspended prison sentence because he has already served the equivalent of nine months in prison being held on remand.

Rebecca Upton, prosecuting, said the marriage broke down completely in December last year, but said the victim, whom The Argus has chosen not to name, had made complaints about his behaviour a year earlier, but chose not to pursue it as she thought their marriage could be saved.

The Argus: Lewes Crown CourtLewes Crown Court

She felt she could no longer trust him after he lied about using her credit cards.

Norsworthy then contacted her on a daily basis with text messages and calls from private numbers, declaring his love for her while also being verbally abusive.

He followed her in his car and was “fixated”, the court heard.

Norsworthy used emotional blackmail, threatening to kill himself and blaming the victim.

He became so angry and jealous that he damaged an innocent person’s car, believing it to belong to a man she was apparently seeing.

The victim said she was left suffering panic attacks and had dreams of being kidnapped. She had to change her daily routine in order to avoid him.

Norsworthy, a builder formerly of Shoreham but now of Alston Way, Worthing, has 25 previous convictions for 102 offences.

His Honour Judge Mark Van Der Zwart said: “The psychological harm of the victim is the real menace of offences like this.

The Argus: Stephen Norsworthy left his ex wife in fear. Stock imageStephen Norsworthy left his ex wife in fear. Stock image

“It’s plain you were irrationally jealous of her, using psychological blackmail.

“You need to know such behaviour will not be tolerated.

“Bullying, controlling and possessive men erode the confidence of the victim. Women need the protection of the courts.”

The judge imposed a nine-month suspended sentence, and put Norsworthy under a restraining order for three years banning him from making contact with the victim.

The only contact he is allowed is through lawyers to settle their divorce.