Stressed-out parents put restraining order on son
A YOUNG father who pestered his parents for money so often and so relentlessly that they became ill from the stress has been banned from contacting them for five years.
Paul and Coreen Kerley, of Southampton, took out a restraining order on their son Matthew Kerley, 24, after he was convicted of harassing multiple family members.
Prosecutor Liam Hunt told Southampton Magistrate's Court that Kerley's constant demands for money had been the source of an "overwhelming amount of anxiety and stress".
Kerley, who restores vintage aircraft for a living and has two young children, was jailed for 32 weeks last year.
The court heard he would call his parents up to 30 times a day, begging them to give him money, and invariably lying about what it as for.
"He told his parents he had a job interview and needed to shave, but his shaver had broken halfway through," Mr Hunt told the court.
"He asked his parents for money, which they gave him, but he then turned up with a full beard."
Even jail had not stopped him from picking up the phone and hassling his mother and father.
"In one day last month, his parents received 30 calls," Mr Hunt said.
"These have also been in the middle of the night. A number of messages have also been received criticising them, before asking yet again for money."
Kerley's lawyer Julie Macey said her client understood that his actions had to stop and
that time spent in prison had done him "the world of good".
"He is looking a lot healthier now than when I saw him three weeks ago," Ms Macey told the court.
"While he was not supposed to contact his parents, it was their bank account that his benefits were being sent to. Now, I believed that is fixed.
"He has a friend to go and stay with now, so things are looking up. He acknowledges he caused his parents a lot of stress and anxiety, and that it had to stop.
"Prison seems to have done him the world of good."
The court extended Kerley's restraining order to a five-year period.