A judge has jailed a “dangerous” offender who sparked a manhunt in Huddersfield after he kidnapped his teenage girlfriend.
Bradford Crown Court heard that 24-year-old Arron Read had previous convictions for wounding, assault and criminal damage and a probation officer had assessed his behaviour as being “extremely manipulative and controlling.”
Read, of Stainecross Avenue, Crosland Moor , had been in a relationship with the 18-year-old complainant for about seven months, but the night before the kidnap offence she had ignored him when he threw stones at her bedroom window in the early hours and he had then waited outside her home until she got up to go to work.
Judge Jonathan Durham Hall QC said Read had then travelled with the teenager on the bus and when she went into work he waited outside until mid-afternoon when she came out for a break with a colleague.
Barrister Ian Hudson, for Read, said his client suffered feelings of anxiety and paranoia as a result of being attacked and at the time of the incident last December he had not been taking his medication as often as he should have done.
Mr Hudson said Read found it helpful to talk to his then girlfriend, but that afternoon other people had tried to stop him having a conversation with her in the car park of the Titanic mill in Linthwaite.
Read became more agitated and after grabbing hold of the teenager he threw her over his shoulder in a “fireman’s lift” and carried her off towards the nearby canal.
Prosecutor Matthew Bean said as police officers began to search for Read and the teenager the defendant made her walk with him to Golcar over a number of fences and across fields.
Mr Bean said over the following few hours the complainant didn’t raise the alarm with anybody because she feared what Read might do.
Read made her walk with him to Milnsbridge where he tried to sell a mobile phone, but the teenager was able to contact a friend on her phone and say where she was.
As they took a taxi to Crosland Moor Read became angry when his mother told him that the police had been looking for him.
Mr Bean said at on stage Read told his girlfriend he would only let her go if she rang the police to tell them everything was alright.
When she refused to make the call Read damaged her new iPhone by throwing it against a wall.
“After this incident she decided she had better do as he demanded,” said Mr Bean.
“She called the 101 number and said she was alright.”
Mr Bean said the complainant felt “a huge relief” when she finally came across a police officer.
Read left the area, but he arrested a short distance away.
Last month Read pleaded guilty to charges of kidnap and criminal damage and Mr Bean said the offending had caused the victim sleepless nights.
He said she no longer went to work on the bus and was now concerned about Read approaching her.
As part of his sentence Judge Durham Hall imposed an indefinite restraining order which bans Read from contacting the complainant, going to her workplace or going within 100 metres of her home.
Mr Hudson said it was not a case involving any previous violence by his client towards the teenager and he had not used or threatened any violence on the day of the offence.
Jailing Read for four years, with an extended licence period of three years, Judge Durham Hall said his problems were behavioural and at the time he had displayed “controlling, demanding and unpleasant” behaviour.
The judge said the incident had caused increased police activity and concern.
“What they had on their hands Mr Read was a clear situation of a man who had seized and carried away a young woman,” said the judge.
“This was, in reality, you exerting your will, over a period of time, over a young woman. It is a deeply and gravely worrying escalation of your behaviour.
“I have no doubt that you satisfy the appropriate ingredients for a finding of dangerousness. You pose a very serious risk of substantial harm to others especially those in a relationship with you and that risk is getting worse.”