Former Test cricketer Stuart MacGill has claimed an emotional court victory after a judge dismissed intimidation charges against him.
MacGill, 52, was accused of stalking and verbally intimidating his friend’s former fiancee Samantha Ford on a Sydney street and at a nearby pub on February 1, 2022.
Magistrate Christine Haskett told Downing Centre Local Court on Friday she did not accept Ms Ford’s evidence that MacGill shouted and pointed at her in a threatening manner.
MacGill shed a tear as the verdict was read, the cricketer appearing via video link from an unknown Sydney location, wearing a liberally unbuttoned black shirt.
His lawyer Steven Mercael said evidence against his client was untruthful and the case never should have gone to court.
“Of course, you saw him on screen, it was quite upsetting,” he told reporters outside court. “This whole process has been very draining for him.
“Our team is really happy for him and he’s also very happy.”
Ms Ford appeared in the courtroom wearing all black as the judgment was read.
The former leg-spinner, who took 208 wickets in 44 Tests for Australia, told the court in January he had been worried his friend Stephen Kerlin was suicidal following the breakdown of his relationship with Ms Ford some months earlier.
Off to the pub
After being unable to contact him, MacGill went to Kerlin’s Barangaroo apartment where he drank “six or seven” bourbon and cokes.
As the pair were walking to the Captain Cook Hotel in The Rocks, Kerlin spotted Ms Ford and began yelling towards her.
Ms Ford claimed MacGill yelled out “you c***, you c***y c***”.
But Ms Haskett said none of the independent witnesses present heard anyone say words to that effect and dismissed Ms Ford’s version of events.
Ms Ford claimed she went to the Captain Cook Hotel to tell staff not to serve the pair more alcohol.
There, she said MacGill stood over her, shouting and pointing aggressively in a way that made her feel unsafe.
In evidence, she said MacGill was shouting in her face for a minute before Kerlin said anything.
But CCTV footage showed Kerlin approached Ms Ford first and MacGill remained standing largely in the same spot.
While the former partners quarrelled animatedly, MacGill looked down at his phone for the most part and only pointed at her for one second.
The judge said Ms Ford’s claims were “totally inconsistent” with the evidence of various witnesses and the CCTV footage.
“The court has grave reservations as to Ms Ford’s credibility and reliability as a witness,” she said.
MacGill’s lawyers submitted that Ms Ford’s evidence was “so poor that the only reasonable conclusion was that she was deliberately untruthful under oath”.
Kerlin previously pleaded guilty to charges of stalking and intimidation and breaching an apprehended violence order.
He was handed a two-year community correction order and fined $2090.
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