Gwinnett man sentenced to 3 years behind bars for stalking ex-girlfriend

William Lee Smith

Credit: Gwinnett County Sheriff's Office

Credit: Gwinnett County Sheriff's Office

William Lee Smith

A Gwinnett County man was found guilty Friday of stalking his ex-girlfriend, authorities said.

William Lee Smith will spend three years behind bars and seven years on probation after stalking the woman for several months in 2016, Gwinnett Judicial Circuit spokesman Dan Mayfield said in a news release.

She obtained a protective order against Smith four months after their breakup, but he kept following her. He drove to her work and around her neighborhood on multiple occasions, according to the release.

In one instance, the victim testified she was jogging when Smith drove up to her and begged her to get back together. She called police, but she had no pictures or videos to prove the stalking, the release said.

A week later, the victim saw Smith parked at her workplace in Lawrenceville, Mayfield said. Smith drove away after he was noticed by the victim, but this time she followed him to take photos and called police.

As police were responding to the victim’s call, Smith made his own call complaining that his ex-wife — who also had a protective order against him — was taking pictures of him in traffic, Mayfield said. Smith told police over the phone he was in the area for an appointment but was unable to provide details.

He was arrested five days later.

Smith said at trial his heart was broken and he just wanted to get back together with the woman, according to the release.

Three other women also testified about similar experiences, Mayfield said. All three had restraining orders against Smith.

One testified that Smith hid behind her house for about 30 minutes before he overheard her speak about him, according to the release. He then fought with a man, who suffered serious injuries.

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