Man charged with stalking Avril Lavigne


Tuesday, August 31, 2004 Posted: 11:10 AM EDT (1510 GMT)

SEATTLE, Washington (Reuters) -- A 30-year-old man from Washington was charged with stalking Canadian singer Avril Lavigne after making repeated attempts to contact her and traveling to her parents' home in Ontario, local authorities said Monday.

James Speedy of Lynnwood, a Seattle suburb, said through a lawyer that while he was a big fan of the 19-year-old rock singer, he did not stalk her.

"I question whether this is a stalking case," said Wayne Fricke, Speedy's lawyer. "I don't think that is the situation you have here."

Speedy was arrested in April just before Lavigne was scheduled to give a free concert at a Seattle-area shopping mall, and told police he had sent e-mails and gifts to Lavigne, her family and managers. He was released on bail at the time and was formally charged late Friday, Lynnwood police said.

Speedy traveled to Napanee, Ontario, last year, where he was arrested and told to leave Canada and not return within a year, according to Canadian news reports.

Lavigne scored a huge hit with her 2002 debut album "Let Go", which sold 14 million copies worldwide. Her current album, "Under My Skin," is currently in the top 10 of the U.S. charts.