After a week of her viral video revealing that a “troubled” person had been harassing and threatening her, Lebanese journalist Ghadi Francis was relieved to hear the news that the unnamed individual had been arrested.
The Internal Security Forces (ISF) announced in a statement on Wednesday that the person, who had been going to Francis’s house, pursuing her, and even threatening to blow up her office and physically assault her, had been identified and detained.
The ISF said that, upon his interrogation, the 35-year-old Lebanese national admitted that he admired the journalist and that he “tried to approach her by going to her house several times, without actually intending to carry out his threats.”
He also confirmed that he had tried posing as a courier in an attempt to reach and contact Francis directly, pledging that he will not disturb her again.
Around a week ago, Francis appeared emotional in a video detailing the “real crisis” that she had been going through for weeks with the mysterious admirer, whom she said was “delusional” and had been living “a story in his own head.”
She said that the individual, whom she did not know nor ever talk to before, had a fake social media account and began to annoy her after she replied to a comment of his on one of her social media posts.
Following her reply, he started to imagine that everything she posted on social media was in some way for or about him, and he began to repeatedly visit her house and “hysterically” ring on her door phone, she said in the video.
Later, he showed up dressed as a courier, and handed her an envelope that contained what Francis called “14 pages of delusion.”
To try to put an end to his disturbing visits and messages, the journalist eventually gifted him a book and asked him to stop coming to her house.
However, the individual kept messaging her, and his messages only got more aggressive when she ignored them, to the point that he began to issue threats, including: “If you don’t answer, I will blow up your office and drag you by the hair.”
She noted that she had provided the stalker’s name to the army.
“Many thanks to those who restored me my peace,” Francis tweeted on Wednesday, in response to the ISF’s announcement of the stalker’s arrest.
Our team works tirelessly to ensure Lebanese people have a reliable alternative to the politically-backed media outlets with their heavily-funded and dangerous propaganda machines. We've been detained, faced nonstop cyber attacks, censorship, attempted kidnapping, physical intimidation, and frivolous lawsuits draining our resources. Financial support from our readers keeps us fighting on your behalf. If you are financially able, please consider supporting The961's work. Support The961. Make a contribution now.