A dating app hookup turned into a nightmare for a man after a woman made dozens of false complaints about him to police and faked a pregnancy, with the help of a forged birth certificate.
The woman’s campaign of revenge included an email to a 10-year-old child intended to make the man look like a paedophile.
Nichola Watts, a 35-year-old caregiver, met A* on an online dating website in January 2019. They dated casually for a few months and he had no reason to be concerned about Watts’ behaviour.
But when he broke off the relationship in October 2019, everything changed.
No one likes being dumped, but hurt feelings is not an excuse for trying to destory someone’s life.
In November 2019, Watts went to the Christchurch South police station to make a formal complaint. In a sworn statement, she alleged A had assaulted her, that the bruises had been seen by her doctor and that she was sick due to her pregnancy.
Watts later told police she did not want to pursue the assault charge, but continued making dozens of complaints alleging that A was harassing her.
When she didn’t have any evidence of the harassment, she fabricated some. Watts created various different email addresses and Snapchat accounts using variations of A’s name, and used this to send herself threatening and abusive messages.
She sent emails to her employer to make it seem like A was sabotaging her employment. She sent emails to Oranga Tamariki to paint a picture of A ruining her home life. She sent emails to a 10-year-old child to portray A as a child sex offender. She even sent emails to police making it appear as if A was confessing to criminal harassment.
In total, Watts made 55 complaints to police.
That probably helped save him. If she had been smarter and only done a couple, they may have believed her. But 55 complaints screams deranged.
Watts was charged and later released on bail. In an effort to discourage any further false statements, a bail condition was imposed that she was not allowed to contact the police unless it was an emergency.
But Watts was not deterred. In January, she sent the investigating officer a text message pretending to be a third party who had knowledge of extensive offending by A, including sexual violations, stalking, computer hacking, intimidation, wilful damage, gang interference and cat theft.
This led to her being charged with breach of a protection order.
When Watts’ case was called in the Christchurch District Court on Tuesday, she refused to leave her holding cell to appear in the dock. Her lawyer, Colin Eason, told Judge Tom Gilbert she was having a panic attack.
Watts was allowed to appear in court via video-link to enter her pleas. She was convicted of six charges, including a representative charge of making a false statement, perverting the course of justice, and breach of a protection order.
Watts has been remanded in custody to a sentencing hearing in June.
If she breaches protection and court orders, it is appropriate she is held in jail to protect her victim.
Ultimately she obviously needs psychiatric assistance. I hope she gets it.