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ITV weather presenter Ruth Dodsworth, imprisoned ex-husband UK News

A TV weather presenter was harassed by her controlling husband who placed a tracking device on her car to check if she was having an affair.

Jealous Jonathan Wignall, 54, was jailed for three years today for tormenting ITV host Ruth Dodsworth, including harassing her in her TV studio.

Ruth, 46, is a regular ITV weather presenter on regional news in Wales and London – and has appeared on This Morning.

But her obsessive husband set off an alarm to check her nightly predictions, rang her doorbell dozens of times a day to ask her to know where she was and who she was with.


He accused her of having an affair – and would demand access to her phone so he could check her messages and delete contacts he didn’t like.

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The former couple married in 2002. Photo: Facebook

Cardiff Crown Court heard his wife Ruth waking up once while sleeping to find music promoter Wignall pressing his fingerprint on his phone so he could access it.

Ruth, a mother of two, burst into tears as she told the court Wignall had stolen her “from what should have been the happiest times of my life.”

She said: “Due to my TV career, I had to try and portray a smiley, happy and sunny personality every day when what I felt was anything but.

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Jonathan Wignall was a former nightclub owner in Swansea. Image: Facebook

“Jonathan’s behavior had a big impact on my professional life and relationships, there were times when I failed to stay together.

“Living with Jonathan was like constantly stepping on eggshells, his mood would flare up in an instant and anything could set him off.

Prosecutor Claire Pickthall said: “By the nature of her job – journalist and TV presenter – Ms Dodsworth worked long hours, attended charity events and had a social media profile that needed to be maintained.

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The court heard how Miss Dodsworth had forged a successful career in broadcasting. Image: Twitter

“She also undertook additional work as a presenter on Coast and Country.”

Ms Pickthall said Wignall would go to work with his wife to see who she was with, but was urged to stop attending ITV studios and filming.

Mrs Pickthall said: ‘When those means of observing Mrs Dodsworth and what she was doing and who were closed, he frequented the studios in Cardiff Bay, parked in the parking lot and she would have to spend her lunch hour sitting in the car., in the parking lot, with the defendant.

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Jonathan Wignall will have to serve 18 months in prison before being released on license

“When he was traveling there with colleagues, he would call her over and over again while traveling, when she would arrive, and he would call her – or she had to call him – in the evening.”

Ruth decided to leave her husband after 17 years of marriage after Wignall bombarded her with more than 150 phone calls in one day and was arrested for harassing his wife.

But after their split, Wignall placed a tracking device under the wheel of his car so he could monitor where she was and set alarms on his phone for when she needed to show the weather.

He also left a CD in his car containing a recorded message from a psychic telling Ruth the couple would be recovering.

Ms Pickthall said Wignall and Ruth traded cars before realizing the Fiat he gave her had a tracking device placed on it.

She said: “There was a suspicion that the accused had placed a tracker on the car she was driving now.

“She was driving home from a relatively remote location and when she returned the accused was seen driving towards her with no apparent reason to be in that area at the time.

“Due to the concerns, she took the car to a garage and staff were asked to look for a tracker on the vehicle as she explained that she was concerned that her ex-husband had placed it on the car.

Ms Pickthall said the listening device was found hidden under the steering wheel of the car.

“Shortly after being discovered while the car was still in the garage, the accused arrived and asked to know what work was being done on the car.

“Suspecting that he was the person who placed the tracker on the vehicle, the director told him that the tracker had been found and the accused had left immediately and the police were notified.”

The court heard police seize Wignall’s laptop and phone and found an app related to the tracking device that he had accessed more than 250 times in less than three weeks.

Ms Pickthall said: “Alarms were also set off on the telephone when Ms Dodsworth was to present the weather forecast on television.”

Ms Pickthall said Wignall also left a CD in the car with a recording of a psychic saying the couple will recover.

Before parting ways, Wignall would insist on driving his wife to work and force her to spend her lunch break sitting with him in their car in a parking lot …

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This notice was published: 2021-04-15 12:01:06