Craziest Celebrity Stalkers
Celebrity: with it comes fame, fortune, oodles of cash and an obsessed fan or two who want nothing more than to make your skin into a suit and to wear it around their home.
Or maybe just lock you in a cage and keep you as a pet forever and ever. You know, the usual stuff.
Within this list are the craziest celebrity stalker stories we could find. From people who try to assassinate the president for the ones they love, to crazies who want to cut someone up and feed them to their dogs. And not necessarily because God or Satan told them to. Although that’s certainly on the table too.
Zeta-Jones was stalked by 33-year-old Dawnette Knight, who threatened to cut her up into little pieces and feed her to her dogs. All because she was madly in love with CZJ’s husband Michael Douglas. After a series of phone calls and a threatening letter, in which she said she planned to assassinate Jones like JFK, Knight admitted to one count of stalking and three counts of making criminal threats and was sentenced to three years in jail.
Tom Cruise had some trouble with Iraq War veteran Edward Van Tassel, who was given a court order to stay away from Cruise after repeatedly trying to give the actor a letter. You know, after brandishing a handgun on the freeway and being sent away to receive psychiatric care for it. The letter was allegedly an attempt to get Cruise to help other veterans, but handgun charges and stalking a celeb do not mix and he was sent back to the hospital.
A homeless man with an unhealthy Mel Gibson obsession (obviously crazy) found himself slapped with a restraining order when all he wanted to do was share mass and talk about Catholicism with the director of ‘The Passion of the Christ.’ He was regularly found trespassing on a compound owned by Gibson, and Zack Sinclair later wound up in court — where he represented himself (insert that old saying here) and was sentenced to three years in prison.
You may remember John Hinckley, Jr. as the crazy person who shot but failed to assassinate President Reagan in the ’80s, and he did it all for the love of actress Jodie Foster. He was obsessed with the movie ‘Taxi Driver’ and even stalked President Jimmy Carter for her attention. Despite penning her a letter confessing his love while she was at Yale, Foster was unaware of his existence. He was not convicted for his crimes for reasons of insanity and remained in a mental hospital for 30 years before being recently released.
Ursula Reichert-Habbishaw, 51, was kicked out of the United States for stalking Richard Gere. She harassed him on a regular basis, calling him and faxing him over 1,000 times in a 14-month period. The voice mails were especially disturbing, telling Gere “I will stay with you for all time” and saying that she had a gun to kill herself. To avoid jail time, a judge told Ursula, a mother of four, to get on a plane to Germany and never return. Which she wisely did.
Uma Thurman’s stalker, Jack Jordan, was sentenced to three years of probation for bothering the star. He had a habit of sending her strange greeting cards and letters which contained pictures of brides with their heads torn off and creepy phrases like, “My hands should be on your body at all times.” He even showed up at her home and later violated his probation by calling her office and cellphone. Jordan pleaded guilty and was given two years in an outpatient program for his second offense.
Legendary director Steven Spielberg’s stalker perhaps got the harshest punishment we came across, having been sentenced to 25 years to life in jail — and for good reason. Seems 31-year-old Jonathan Norman was arrested on Spielberg’s estate with duct tape and handcuffs, and admitted that he planned to rape the director in front of his wife. That hasn’t stopped the other crazies, though. In 2002, a restraining order was filed against Diana Louisa Napolis, who claimed Spielberg was part of a Satanic cult and had put a chip in her brain called a “soul catcher.” Okay then.
Drifter William Lepeska swam across the Biscayne Bay to Miami naked to get to tennis player Anna Kournikova’s home, which sounds kinda familiar. He ended up emerging in the wrong place and was found screaming, “Anna, save me!” by a 3-year-old. In addition to having a tattoo of her name on his bicep, Lepsaka was sad in court when Anna said she hadn’t been reading his letters. He was placed in a psychiatric facility and ordered to stay 1,000 feet away from Kournikova at all times.
Gwyneth Paltrow‘s hanger-on was a pizza delivery man who spent his time emailing Paltrow, sending her letters, packages and pornography on a regular basis, hoping that they could open a Kinko’s franchise together. Even weirder, after telling her he was going to cut the sin out of her with “God’s scalpel,” he sent her a vibrator along with the missive “because I love you.” He was eventually deemed insane and sent to serve time in a mental institution.
‘Late Show’ host David Letterman had the most persistent stalker with the most tragic ending. Margaret Mary Ray was arrested numerous times for stalking the host, first in 1988 for stealing his Porsche and pretending she was his wife. Over the years she continued to trespass on his property and harass him, spending a total of 10 months in jail and 14 months in a mental facility. In 1998 she committed suicide by kneeling in front of a train, and left no note behind.