A KILMARNOCK man has avoided jail despite tormenting a dental nurse with his "bizarre and outrageous behaviour" for nearly 12 years.

Colin Mitchell - commonly referred to as 'Mad Mitch' according to his solicitor - appeared at the town's sheriff court on Wednesday, June 19, for sentencing in relation to the matter.

It follows an earlier guilty plea to engaging in a course of conduct which caused fear or alarm to the complainer between March 2012 and February 2024.

The court's procurator fiscal depute explained in great depth the extent of Mitchell's behaviour during this time.

She stated that the 57-year-old had been a patient at the dental practice, where the complainer worked, for around 10 years.

Over these years, Mitchell would often come to the practice in Kilmarnock without an appointment - with the woman often required to ask him to leave.

On these occasions, the Kilmarnock man would frequently wait at her vehicle and speak to her in what was described as "riddles" involving references to music and people in history.

This got to a point where the complainer found it necessary to ask a colleague to walk her to the car.

Despite the practice being taken over in 2021, and Mitchell being informed he could not attend unless he had an appointment, this appeared to have little effect on his behaviour and he continued to attend on a regular basis.

This led to a protocol being put in place whereby the dental nurse did not have to deal with the man whether he had an appointment or not.

The matter then escalated in the summer of 2023 when the complainer moved into a new address in the town, the court was told.

Around that time the witness saw that he was on her street and he shouted over to her “you not going to talk to me”. She replied saying she was just taking pizzas in which then identified her home to Mitchell.

This led to further incidents of the Kilmarnock man attempting to make contact with the woman at her home.

The court was told that on December 4 last year the woman's husband found a Christmas card on their doorstep which contained similar "ramblings" to those of previous encounters with Mitchell.

Also within the card was details of when the 57-year-old next had a dental appointment.

This concerned the complainer but at this time she did not feel it required reporting to the police, the prosecutor explained.

However, this stance changed following a further incident at her home in the early hours of February 1 this year.

At around 1.30am she and her husband were were in their bed asleep when they were woken by banging and shouting at their front door.

Her partner checked the door but couldn’t see anyone. However, the complainer then looked out of her window and saw the accused running out of her garden. He then waited at her car before running off.

The following morning a number of items including a red bag were found next to the car by her husband, though the woman was not immediately aware of this.

When she attended work that same morning a decision was made to deregister Mitchell as a patient. He attended that same day asking for the witness and was told to leave and that he was no longer welcome and he left at this stage.

When the woman returned home later that evening, she was informed by her husband about the items being found at her car.

Upon examining the bag a number of notes were found within which appeared to be in the handwriting of Mitchell.

They seemed to be written in riddles but also contained notes informing the complainer how long he had gone without sexual intercourse.

Due to the nature of these notes and because the accused had been attending her home address she decided to contact the police.

Police traced the accused on February 5. He was arrested and conveyed to Kilmarnock police office where he was cautioned and charged, making no reply.

Defending, solicitor Graeme Cunningham said: “(This is) bizarre behaviour from a man who can be described as bizarre.

“When I read some of the evidence described in this complaint some of the behaviour is behaviour I have seen.

“He (Mitchell) often comes to my office without an appointment – me and my staff just accept it for what it is but he doesn’t visit our homes.

“I can understand why after a point she reported it to the police.”

Mr Cunningham continued in his description of the Kilmarnock man, who he referred to once again as a "strange character".

He added: “People where he used to live called him Mad Mitch because he was eccentric in the extreme.”

The solicitor also explained that Mitchell had long-standing issues with alcohol and substance abuse however had not taken anything for a while, reducing his consumption “by his own volition”.

Mr Cunningham continued: “He’s far from stupid. He realised at one point there was a link between his consumption and his behaviour.

“He sought assistance with that and he is trying to deal with that.

“There has been no offending since this incident and his impromptu visits are less frequent.”

And this progress was something the solicitor hoped Sheriff Shirley McKenna would consider when sentencing Mitchell - who had told a social worker he meant no harm by his actions which were done out of "boredom and loneliness".

He said: “He hopes that we have not yet reached the point where custody is required.”

Sheriff McKenna commented: “I can see that he has got his quirky ways but this is not just bizarre behaviour, it is outrageous behaviour.”

She opted not to impose a custodial sentence, instead settling on a community based sentence.

A non-harassment order was put in place between Mitchell and the complainer, which will last for a period of five years.

The 57-year-old was also handed a restriction of liberty order, meaning he will have to remain within his bail address between 7pm and 7am each day for four months.

A device will also be placed in the complainers home to ensure he cannot approach this address.

As well as this, the Kilmarnock man was ordered to complete 100 hours of unpaid work over six months, as part of a community payback order.

“Hopefully that will relieve the boredom you seem to have," Sheriff McKenna added.