Silent stranger terrified woman as he tried to enter her Dennyloanhead home

An offender showed up at a stranger’s house, opened the door and stood silently in the doorway staring at her as the terrified woman asked him what he was doing there.

By Court Reporter
Thursday, 26th May 2022, 6:20 pm
Updated Monday, 30th May 2022, 5:31 pm

Craig Stirling (47) was apparently under the influence of something when he showed up at the woman’s home.

When he placed a cigarette in his mouth she thought he was looking for a light for it and told him she did not have one.

Stirling appeared at Falkirk Sheriff Court earlier today having pleaded guilty to being found in the curtilage of a property, attempting to gain entry to the premises – to the fear and alarm of the female resident – in Hogan Place, Dennyloanhead on February 27 last year.

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Stirling appeared at Falkirk Sheriff Court

Procurator fiscal debut Danielle McDonald said: “It was 1.50pm and the witness was in her home address. Her front door was closed but not locked. She heard a noise at the front door opening and closing.

"She went to the front door with her children following close behind. She saw the accused standing looking in the door window and she saw the door was ajar. She opened the door further and asked the accused why he was there.

"He stood there staring at her and didn’t speak. He then placed a cigarette in his mouth. She told the accused she didn’t have a lighter if that’s why he was there. The accused began to walk away, so the witness closed the door behind him.”

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She believed Stirling, who was a total stranger to her, was under the influence of something when he appeared at her door.

Stephen Biggam, defence solicitor, said Stirling, who pleaded guilty to the offence on the day of his trial, accepted it would have been a frightening experience for the woman and her children and had no idea why he did what he did.

"He has taken the pandemic very badly and has deteriorated both physically and mentally.”

Sheriff Derek Livingston said: “I have no doubt you gave her quite a fright turning up at her house as she didn’t know you.”

He ordered Stirling, 11 Wellpark Terrace, Bonnybridge, to play the woman £250 and fined him £180 to be paid at a rate of £10 per week.