Rose Slowe appeared at the Old Bailey, on Friday 20 January 2023, as Prosecution Counsel in a high-profile sentencing hearing. The Defendant, Jason Penrose had previously pleaded guilty to an offence of stalking actress Claire Foy, over a 6-month period between August 2021 and February 2022, and two offences of breaching an Interim Stalking Protection Order (‘ISPO’) in February 2022.
The offending had been protracted and persistent. It commenced with the Defendant phoning and sending hundreds of emails to Ms Foy’s agents in the UK and USA over the course of August and September 2021. During November 2021, Ms Foy’s publicist received over a thousand messages from the Defendant. These made reference to, inter alia, Ms Foy being or becoming his girlfriend, and providing his whereabouts so Ms Foy could come and meet him.
In late November and early December 2021, the Defendant also contacted Ms Foy’s sister, by phone, email and LinkedIn request, and attended a local café frequented by Ms Foy asking where she was.
On 17 December 2021, the Defendant attended Ms Foy’s home address and rang the doorbell repeatedly, causing her considerable fear and distress. Ms Foy called the police who attended and arrested the Defendant near the address. Following a mental health assessment in custody, he was Sectioned.
The Defendant then breached the ISPO which was imposed on 7 February 2022, first by sending a letter to Ms Foy’s home address and thereafter a parcel.
The offending had a huge impact on Ms Foy’s day-to-day activities. In Victim Personal Statements read to the Court she described feeling vulnerable living alone with her daughter, having trouble sleeping, being in absolute fear of leaving her property, constantly alert, fearful of suspicious post or her doorbell ringing, and has had to hire security at financial cost.
In what was a delicate sentencing exercise, balancing the Defendant’s mental ill-heath, immigration status and the seriousness of the offending, Rose proposed carefully considered conditions that the Court could attach to a Suspended Sentence Order. Rose further sought a Restraining Order, of indefinite duration, containing a number of prohibitions which were proportionate and necessary to ensure Ms Foy’s protection from harassment.
The Court sentenced the Defendant to 22 months custody, wholly suspended for a period of 2 years, with a number of conditions which included ensuring his voluntary repatriation to the USA as early as the following day, and a requirement that he notify the police if he is to return to the UK. In addition, the Court imposed a Restraining Order in respect of Ms Foy, preventing the Defendant from contacting her directly or indirectly, by any means, sending letters, gifts or parcels to her at any location, entering the London Boroughs of Camden or Islington, and going within 100 metres of any premises where he knows or believes Ms Foy to be. That order was imposed until further order, offering Ms Foy indefinite protection.