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Jury in New York City convicts fan of stalking Uma Thurman

NEW YORK (AP) – A former mental patient obsessed with Uma Thurman faces up to a year in jail after a jury convicted him Tuesday of stalking and harassing the actress with a barrage of frightening advances.

Jack Jordan, a 37-year-old out-of-work lifeguard and pool cleaner, showed no emotion as the jury forewoman said he was guilty of stalking and one count of aggravated harassment.

The balding, bespectacled Jordan was calm as court officers led him from the courtroom in handcuffs with an officer carrying the large, overstuffed backpack Jordan always brought to court. The judge ordered a psychiatric exam before Jordan’s next court date on June 2.

“I’ve learned some disturbing things about this defendant during this case,” said state Supreme Court Justice Gregory Carro. “I am going to remand him for a psychiatric exam.”

Defense lawyer George Vomvolakis said Jordan was disappointed with the verdict and that he will soon decide whether to appeal. He requested protective custody for Jordan, saying he faces “specific threats because he’s a stalker.”

“He was actually assaulted” in jail after his arrest, he said.

A Thurman spokesman said the actress had no comment on the verdict. Prosecutors also said they would not comment.

Despite the conviction, Jordan will not face much time behind bars. The most the judge can give him on the misdemeanor counts is one year, and Jordan can get time lopped off for good behavior and the six weeks he already served.

The judge can issue an order of protection that requires Jordan to stay away from Thurman.

The verdict comes after a weeklong trial that featured riveting testimony from Thurman, who told the jury she was “completely freaked out” by Jordan’s behavior. She called the whole experience “a nightmare.”

Prosecutors say Jordan had stalked the “Kill Bill” and “Pulp Fiction” star since 2005, when an intense crush that had been building since high school made him decide the two just had to be together. At one point, he sent a note that said, “My hands should be on your body at all times.”

He showed up on Thurman’s Greenwich Village doorstep and on the Manhattan set of her movie “My Super Ex-Girlfriend.” He sent her bizarre cards and letters, at least 20 of them after he was committed to a Maryland mental facility.

Jordan testified in his own defense, saying Friday he now understands how Thurman could have been frightened by his attempts to see her, and by his comment that her two children didn’t exist, that they were “an illusion.”

“I was feeling distressed,” said Jordan. “I had this feeling of longing for Ms. Thurman and I was trying to explain it. I was not trying to scare her in any way.”

Thurman, 38, testified for three hours Thursday, captivating the jury with her story of how the stalking frightened her and made her fear for her children.

She testified about a card Jordan delivered to her movie trailer in lower Manhattan’s SoHo neighborhood. It bore a drawing of an open grave, a headstone and a man standing on the edge of a razor blade. A spiral of random words on the card referred to “chocolate, mouth, soft, kissing” and the remark about his hands being on her body.

Jordan said he developed a crush on Thurman in high school after seeing her in the 1988 Terry Gilliam movie “The Adventures of Baron Munchausen.” His feelings intensified after he saw her in the Quentin Tarantino-directed “Kill Bill” in 2003.

The son of a physicist and a homemaker, Jordan earned a bachelor’s degree in English literature from the University of Chicago in 1994; he also has done most of the work for a master’s degree.

The prosecutor noted Jordan’s education and intelligence when she told jurors the defendant was trying to make them believe his pursuit of Thurman was naive and guileless when in fact, she said, it was subtly calculating and intimidating.

Jordan, one of eight children, lives with his parents in Gaithersburg, Md. He testified they had him committed to a mental facility in late 2005 after learning he was being investigated because of his obsession with Thurman.

After his release, Jordan started showing up repeatedly at Thurman’s house last year. When he was arrested on Oct. 5, 2007, he was living out of his car in Manhattan and working part-time as a lifeguard and pool cleaner.

Source: The Associated Press

Jury deliberations begin in Thurman stalker trial

NEW YORK (Reuters) – A New York jury began deliberations on Monday in the case of a man accused of stalking actress Uma Thurman and harassing her family.

Jack Jordan, 37, is accused of sending harassing e-mails to Thurman’s father and brother, loitering for hours on the steps of Thurman’s Manhattan apartment and visiting her trailer on the set of the 2006 film, “My Super Ex-Girlfriend.”

He is charged with misdemeanor counts of stalking and harassment of the “Kill Bill” and “Pulp Fiction” actress and faces up to one year in prison if convicted.

Thurman testified during the five-day trial that Jordan’s actions caused her to fear for her life and the safety of her two children.

“I was completely freaked out. It was like a nightmare,” Thurman said.

Jordan’s lawyer, George Vomvolakis, portrayed him as a desperate man trying to endear himself to the woman he loved.

“Will you see obsession? Yes,” Vomvolakis told jurors during his closing argument. “What you will not see is the intention to scare … In his own mind, he thinks that he had a chance.”

Jordan’s parents had him committed to a mental institution after his visit to Thurman’s movie set. He now lives with his parents in Maryland and is training to be a teacher.

Source: Variety

Accused NY stalker says he didn’t mean to scare Uma Thurman

NEW YORK (AP) – A fan accused of creepy activities that left Uma Thurman “completely freaked out” insisted Friday that his longtime crush on the actress was harmless.

“In a misguided way I was trying to give her an opportunity to meet me and give myself an opportunity to meet her,” said the defendant, who identified himself on the witness stand as Jackson William Leslie Jordan.

“I was not trying to scare her in any way,” Jordan added, despite the fact that he showed up at her movie set and her home, and sent e-mails and letters to Thurman and her family.

On Thursday, Thurman testified about a bizarre card that the defendant delivered to her trailer in Manhattan’s SoHo section, where she was making a movie.

It bore a drawing of an open grave, a headstone and a man standing on the edge of a razor blade. A spiral of random words referred to “chocolate, mouth, soft, kissing” and declared, “My hands should be on your body at all times.”

“I was completely freaked out,” Thurman said of the drawing, which was on a religious confirmation card. “It was almost like a nightmare; it was scary.”

Thurman said bits of paper fluttered out when she opened the card. One of them was a picture of a bride with her head torn off.

On Friday, Jordan tried to explain the card’s meaning.

“I felt I was walking the razor’s edge,” he said. “I felt that it reflected this relationship that I unfortunately imaged we had.”

He added: “This cartoon was meant to amuse her, to endear me to her.”

Defense attorney George Vomvolakis asked: “Do you see how this could have scared her?”

Jordan replied: “I see it now. It’s an ironic, kind of twisted sense of humor.”

Thurman also said e-mails from the defendant made references to her ex-husband and children. One said, “You have no children,” and called her kids, ages 6 and 9, an “illusion.” The same e-mail referred to the biblical story of God ordering Abraham to kill his son Isaac but then rescinding the order.

The actress and her parents and brother, who also testified previously, were not in Manhattan’s state Supreme Court on Friday.

Jordan said that he was “humiliated” by the trial and the fact that his private affections for the actress had become so public.

He is charged with stalking and aggravated harassment, and faces up to a year in jail, if convicted.

He admitted he had told Thurman’s family that he would kill himself if he couldn’t’ meet her. But he added it “was a clumsy and poor way of expressing my emotions for her.”

“I wasn’t feeling suicidal, but I was expressing a depth of feeling that was very distressing,” he said.

Jordan, who lives in Gaithersburg, Md., said he first developed a crush on Thurman when he was in high school after seeing her in the movie, “The Adventures of Baron Munchausen.”

His feelings for her intensified, he said, after he saw her in “Kill Bill,” in 2003. The movie prompted him to sent her a letter in which he said: “I was overcome by a tenderness and affection for you that I’ve never felt in my life. I feel that we are destined to meet,” Jordan testified.

Source: The Associated Press