(CBS) — A judge has granted Disney star Selena Gomez a restraining order against a Des Plaines man accused of stalking her and threatening to kill her.
Police said the man, Thomas Brodnicki, is a “scary man” and they are taking his threat to kill Gomez “very seriously.”
The Des Plaines man flew to Los Angeles to try to see Gomez several times and, as CBS 2’s Mai Martinez reports, this isn’t the first time Brodnicki has been accused of stalking women.
Brodnicki is no stranger to Des Plaines police. The 46-year-old was first arrested there in 2003 for stalking a waitress.
“He was just a customer that came into the restaurant, locked in on her and just became infatuated with her and wouldn’t let her go,” Des Plaines Police Chief Jim Prandini said.
Police said Brodnicki was also arrested for stalking a clerk at a White Hen.
“He’s a scary individual and he puts victims … very quickly puts victims in fear of physical harm,” Prandini said. “You know, he wants to have relations with them, wants to marry them within a few minutes of meeting them, wants to have children with them. … and when he locks in on someone it can be a very scary experience.”
CBS 2 has learned that Brodnicki has been arrested at least seven times since 1986. He’s been charged with stalking and harassing and has served time in prison.
Brandini said Brodnicki didn’t threaten his Des Plaines victims with physical harm, but that’s not the case in L.A. Police there said that Brodnicki told a doctor he had thoughts of hurting and killing Gomez.
In an official court declaration, Gomez stated she is in “extreme fear” of Brodnicki. On Thursday, a judge granted her a temporary restraining order against Brodnicki.
Prandini said, based on Brodnicki’s extensive history, the danger posed to Gomez is real.
“With threats that were made to her, he has graduated to a different level and you can’t pretend that this isn’t going to happen,” he said. “If he’s put in a situation, I firmly believe that he would do something.”
A judge in L.A. has granted Gomez a temporary restraining order against Brodnicki, requiring him to stay 100 yards away from Gomez, as well as her home and workplace. He’s also not allowed to contact her in any way, directly or indirectly.
A hearing on the case has been scheduled for Nov. 4, when the restraining order might be extended to three years.