The dangers of Online Dating – Susan’s story.
It all started with so much hope in her heart in December 2012 – when Susan Hulbert signed up for an online dating account.
Susan, a bubbly mum of two, just wanted to find love like her friends were doing and initially it was all going so well.
She was inundated with messages at first but one really caught her eye – from Gavin Taylor from Telford.
Say’s Susan an attractive 30 something, “I started talking to Gavin pretty much straight away, he just seemed normal and different to many of the strange men you get on there”
“We arranged to meet one Sunday afternoon, he seemed nice and I thought he was a gentleman”.
The couple started seeing each other but Susan began to get a creeping suspicion that Gavin, on the surface a high flying career person, was not quite the Prince Charming she first believed.
“He would get really angry with things and with the Police especially”.
Things came to a head on the 21st April 2013 when Susan travelled to Telford to stay for the weekend.
She confronted Gavin about a series of text messages he was receiving and he suddenly lashed out.
Susan continues “He started hitting my head against the wall and I slipped down and started crying, He started to punch me in the face – I had bruises all over my face and hands where I tried to protect myself”.
Susan managed to free herself and ran outside but was again grabbed by Gavin Taylor who began dragging her back towards the house. Mercifully for Susan a neighbour heard her screams and had called the Police but not before she had suffered a fractured cheekbone, large bumps to her head and bruising across her face and body.
At Telford Magistrates Court in May, Taylor pleaded guilty to assault by beating. He was forced to pay compensation but escaped a custodial sentence, said Susan “He should have gone to prison, he is a danger to women”.
Susan makes a heartfelt plea to others to be cautious and to stay safe online.
And yes there IS an alternative with Searchmate – if this can happen to a bubbly single mum from the Midlands, it can happen to any of us.
The story actually created a lot of national media interest too – but unbelievably the dating site involved wouldn’t even comment.
Here is the Daily Mail’s view – Mail Online.