Love Island host Laura Whitmore has told how she felt “threatened” after being followed by a strange man in a London park.
The terrifying incident had some similarities to the horrific case of tragic 33-year-old Sarah Everard last month.
On her new book No One Can Change Your Life Except For You, Laura, 35, said: “Women walking alone can often feel threatened – please don’t make their day harder.
“Earlier today I took my dog Mick for a walk. On the opposite side of the road leading to the park was a guy in his twenties with a large Alsatian.
“Now, my dog is a bit of a dick and barks at big dogs. As I pulled him away, the owner of the dog started talking to me, but I could barely hear over the incessant yelping.
“’I would like to chat with you’ is what I could faintly make out from his direction. Maybe he recognised me, maybe he was being too familiar, but there was something sinister that made me uncomfortable.
“I smiled and nodded towards Mick pulling me along and kept on walking. The young man then turned round and started following me… through the park and over the bridge.
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“My pace quickened. Forty minutes later I saw him again, standing watching me.
“Whether this man was harmless or not, I felt scared and fragile.
“I ended up jumping into a cab on the main road at the opposite side of the park, as I thought he may follow me home.
“Now, maybe I was overreacting, but I felt exposed and vulnerable and wanted to remove myself safely and quickly from the situation.
“Guys, for the love of god, DO NOT follow a woman walking by herself – even if it’s for a ‘friendly’ chat.
“Be aware that we all have the ability to make someone feel vulnerable. And, women, be aware that we also have the ability to get out of the situation.”
Ms Everard went missing on March 3 while walking home after visiting a friend in Clapham, south London.
The 33-year-old’s body was found hidden in an area of woodland near Ashford in Kent a week later, on March 10.
Serving Metropolitan Police officer Wayne Couzens, 48, from Deal, Kent, has been charged with her kidnap and murder.
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