E. Providence city worker, friend sentenced for tracking woman’s car
It was sentencing day in Providence Superior Court Wednesday for a jealous ex-boyfriend obsessed with a former flame and the East Providence city employee who helped him.
Prosecutors say Leah Stoddard and John Mitchell used a sophisticated GPS tracking device that was installed on the victim’s gearbox next to the driveshaft of her car to follow her around town.
The victim is Mitchell’s ex-girlfriend, and after she filed a restraining order against him she became suspicious when she kept running into him and Stoddard around town.
Stoddard and Mitchell pleaded nolo contedere to two misdemeanor charges.
On Wednesday, a judge sentenced to one-year probation.
Court documents show that Stoddard and Mitchell worked together, shortly after the North Providence man and his ex ended the four-month relationship.
Prosecutors said the victim went to a Pawtucket mechanic when she ran into both Stoddard and Mitchell together in bars around East Providence.
The mechanic scanned the car and showed the victim the tracking device which is about the size of a double A battery.
According to an Amazon receipt, Stoddard purchased the device, and in a phone interview with police, Mitchell said he was the one who installed it in the victim’s car.
Special Assistant Attorney General Albert Vitali read a statement in court from the victim.
“I constantly look out my rear view mirror and I constantly believe I’m being followed,” Vitali read from the letter. “I’ll never understand why someone would take the time and harass, intimidate and attempt to destroy someone’s life.”
Outside of court, Mitchell’s attorney, S. Joshua Macktaz, addressed the sentence.
“I think the resolution was fair given the allegations,” Macktaz said.
As part of the sentence, the two cannot have contact with the victim.
Stoddard and her attorney were not available for comment after court.
ABC 6 reached out to the City of East Providence but declined our request for comment.