Celebrities have it made, right? When they reach a certain level of fame, all the perks role in: the fat paycheques, free goods, fast cars, luxurious vacations, and the list goes on. Who wouldn’t want to be a celebrity?
Well sometimes it’s not what it’s cracked up to be. The bad part about everyone knowing who you are is….everyone knows who you are. Or at least they think they do. Once in a while, a crazed fan decides they are meant to be with/help/send a message to a celebrity and all hell breaks loose. Sure, there are the weirdoes that simply send an inappropriate letter or two, but then there are the full-blown stalkers that somehow get involved with a celeb’s life, often leading to dangerous situations.
Here are 10 stalking stories that might make you forget your celebrity ambitions.
10 Sandra Bullock/Joshua Corbett
Just last year, a crazed fan dared to mess with America’s sweetheart, Sandra Bullock. Joshua Corbett, a 39-year-old “fan”, went above and beyond in this stalker case, actually gaining entry to the home of the pretty starlet. Bullock was home at the time and came face-to-face with the intruder after she had showered and was headed to her bedroom. Corbett was dressed in dark clothing, standing in the hallway. Bullock ran to her bedroom, locked the door and called 911. Corbett was arrested, carrying a notebook filled with cut-out pictures of Bullock and yelling, “Sandy, I’m Sorry! Please don’t press charges!” A subsequent search of his home found a collection of weaponry, including several machine guns. Luckily, Miss Congeniality was only left fairly shaken, but unharmed.
9 Selena Gomez/Thomas Brodnicki
In 2011, 46-year-old Thomas Brodnicki was arrested and charged with felony stalking of Barney-and-Friends-kid-turned-pop-star Selena Gomez. He had travelled from Illinois to California to find Gomez and made several attempts to contact her, including trying to gain access to the Disney Studio property. He told police that he and Gomez were “involved a relationship and destined to be together.” The 20-year-old songstress begged to differ. The stalking charges were dismissed, but Gomez obtained a restraining order to keep her stalker at bay. In 2014, Brodnicki began emailing Gomez again, laying out a plan for them to meet.
To add insult to injury, a second stalker surfaced in 2014. Che Cruz, 20, was arrested after breaking into Gomez’s home, released, and then rearrested in her home again, two days later. He was ordered to get treatment in a mental health facility.
8 David Letterman/Margaret Mary Ray
In 1988, Margaret Mary Ray was arrested when she didn’t pay a toll when crossing New York’s Lincoln Tunnel. Turns out she had “borrowed” David Letterman’s Porsche and took it for a bit of a joyride with her three-year-old son (she was a mother of five at the time). She claimed she was married to Letterman. May, who had a family history of schizophrenia and was showing signs herself, was arrested on Letterman’s property eight more times in the following years. Understanding May’s mental state, Letterman declined to press criminal charges, although she did spend many months off and on in jail. In 1998, after another stalking incident and refusing to take her medications, May sadly took her life by kneeling in front of an oncoming train. In her suicide note to her mother, she said, “I’m all traveled out.”
7 Madonna/Robert Dewey Hoskins
In the early 90s, when Madonna was still at the top of the charts, Robert Dewey Hoskins was so infatuated with the Material Girl that he threatened to cut her from ear to ear if she wouldn’t marry him. Not exactly the proposal girls dream of, Madonna wasn’t very receptive. In 1996, Hoskins scaled the wall of Madonna’s Hollywood Hills home and was shot twice by her security team. Hoskins was jailed 10 years and then spent time in and out of mental institutions. In 2012, Madonna was forced to dredge up the old memories when Hoskins escaped from his mental facility. Luckily he was apprehended a week later.
6 Uma Thurman/Jack Jordan
Uma Thurman’s Kill Bill skills may have come in handy against her stalker, Jack Jordan. From 2005 until 2007, Jordan sent Thurman letters, love notes, emails about her children and cards, including a charming little drawing of a grave with a headstone. He even went to her Greenwich Village home at one point. It seems that schizophrenia and bipolar disorder led Jordan to his stalking behaviour and an arrest for stalking and harassment in 2008. He was arrested again in 2010 when he violated his probation and attempted to contact Thurman at her office.
5 Catherine Zeta-Jones/Dawnette Knight
Thanks to Fatal Attraction, Michael Douglas knows the ins and outs of a woman obsessed. In 2004, Dawnette Knight became so enamoured with Douglas that she began stalking and harassing his wife, Catherine Zeta-Jones. Knight sent dozens of threatening letters to the actress, indicating that she would slice Zeta-Jones up and feed her to her dogs. She was charged with stalking and sentenced to three years in prison. She did write one more letter—an apology to Zeta-Jones, claiming she was a confused girl who was in love. She wanted to be forgiven and return to college where she was studying, wait for it, child psychology.
4 Jodie Foster/John Hinckley Jr.
Men do some pretty ridiculous things to catch the attention of women. Often it involves fast cars or athletic heroics. John Hinckley Jr. decided to go another way to catch the attention of actress Jodie Foster. After stalking her for some time and even going as far as to enroll at Yale University, simply to be close to her, Hinckley took his obsession to the next level. On March 30, 1981, Hinckley attempted to assassinate then president Ronald Reagan. His reasoning? He needed a grand gesture to capture the attention and admiration of Foster. Not surprisingly, Foster wasn’t impressed and Hinckley was arrested. He was, however, found not guilty by reason of insanity.
3 Justin Bieber/Dana Martin
Dana Martin was imprisoned for raping and murdering a 15-year-old girl in 2000. He was behind bars when he developed a crush on Justin Bieber. Martin wrote The Biebs many letters and even had his face tattooed on his leg, along with the words “Never Say Never” (the title of one of Beiber’s film). He also wrote to Ellen DeGeneres (assuming she and Bieber were friends), trying to contact Bieber. When his letters went unanswered, Martin grew bitter. He hired two men to kill and castrate the pop star, giving gruesome details on how to carry out the deed. The plan was underway when the two would-be-killers were apprehended at the Canadian border for an outstanding warrant. Despite the botched plot, Martin says he will eventually get the job done.
2 Selena/Yolanda Saldivar
Selena, the young, beautiful “Queen of Tejano Music” had plenty of admirers. The natural thing to do was to start a fan club. Luckily, Yolanda Saldivar was there to begin said fan club, after approaching Selena’s father with the idea. Saldivar became close with the singer, eventually managing several of her boutiques. In 1995, Selena’s father did some investigating into missing money from both the fan club as well as the boutiques and came to the conclusion that Saldivar had been embezzling funds and was asked to leave. On the morning of March 31, Selena met up with Saldivar at a hotel to tie up some loose ends, and Saldivar shot the singer in the shoulder. Selena was able to place a call to 911, but her blood loss was too extensive and she succumbed to her injuries. Saldivar was charged and convicted of first-degree murder, though she claims it was an accident.
1 John Lennon/Mark David Chapman
One of the most shocking moments in music history would have to be the 1980 assassination of musical genius, John Lennon. Chapman idolized Lennon but took it personally when Lennon commented that The Beatles were bigger than Jesus. The religious man found Lennon to be a hypocrite, signing about love and peace while raking in big bucks. Chapman decided Lennon should die, and made his opinion well known to people, including his wife. On December 8, Chapman staked out Lennon’s apartment building, The Dakota, and actually encountered him several times that day, even getting an autograph. In the evening, as Lennon entered his building, Chapman fired five shots into his back, sat down, and waited for police to arrive. Chapman was charged and convicted of killing the singer.
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