A 23-year-old man, who stalked his former partner by repeatedly sending her abusive messages on voice mail and social media, has just avoided a jail term.

Ryan Oliver committed the offences over a six-week period.

Oliver, of Seaforth Road, Langlees, Falkirk, appeared for sentencing at Dunfermline Sheriff Court.

He admitted that between November 17 and January 3 in Inverkeithing, he repeatedly contacted his former partner via social media, called her from withheld numbers and left abusive messages on her voice mail, repeatedly shouted, swore and made derogatory comments.

The court heard that Oliver had committed similar offences against two other women.

Depute fiscal Rachel Aedy said the couple had met through a dating app and they originally were getting on well but Oliver began to be “paranoid” about her not replying to his messages quickly.

Oliver also became convinced that the woman was seeing her former partner again and started sending her abusive messages calling her a “fat slag” and a “liar”.

She decided to end the relationship but he continued to pester her with messages sometimes threatening to kill himself and saying it would be her fault.

In another message he threatened to “smash” her ex-partner and he also sent voice mails, again calling her a “slag”.

Sheriff James Macdonald told Oliver he now had three domestic offences against three different women and he was “only just persuaded there was an alternative to prison.”

The sheriff imposed a community payback order with 200 hours of unpaid work and 18 months of supervision.

He also imposed a 12-month non-harassment order.