Ruth Dodsworth says she 'wouldn't be here now' without children's warning over abusive ex-husband

Amy Johnson
·2-min read

Watch: Ruth Dodsworth speaks to This Morning about her abusive ex-husband

ITV weather presenter Ruth Dodsworth has said she "wouldn't be here now" if it weren't for her two children warning her not to return home to her abusive ex-husband.

Jonathan Wignall was jailed last week after almost a decade-long campaign of controlling behaviour, harassment and stalking against Dodsworth. 

The abuse saw him attempt to use her fingerprint while she was sleeping to access her phone, refuse to allow her to travel to filming locations without him and fit a tracking device to her car. 

Read more: Mum launches domestic abuse awareness programme after escaping violent ex

The situation peaked one day in 2019 when Dodsworth's children phoned her to warn she would be in danger if she came home.

<p>ITV weather presenter Ruth Dodsworth talks to This Morning about the abuse she suffered at the hands of her ex-husband Jonathan Wignall, who has been jailed.</p>
<p>Credit: @thismorning via Twitter / ITV</p>
ITV weather presenter Ruth Dodsworth talks to This Morning about the abuse she suffered at the hands of her ex-husband Jonathan Wignall, who has been jailed. (@thismorning via Twitter)

Speaking on This Morning, the 45-year-old said: “I’d been in work and during that week he had been phoning me hundreds and hundreds of times a day, text messages." 

She went on: "That particular day he’d started drinking earlier in the day. 

"By the time my children got home from school they were phoning me saying ‘Mum, don’t come home. Don’t come home. He’s going to kill you’.

“And I think, for me, that was a turning point. I didn’t go home that night, because I think if I had I wouldn’t be here now in any shape or form.”

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Dodsworth said Wignall, 54, also offered money to their children to go through her phone. 

She added that confiding in someone "changed everything" after they said they would go to the police if she did not. 

Read more: Victoria Derbyshire presents BBC show with domestic abuse helpline written on hand

Wignall plead guilty to one count of coercive and controlling behaviour and stalking before he was due to stand trial last month.

He was sentenced to a total of three years in custody, of which he will serve half before being released on licence, and was also given a restraining order against contacting Dodsworth.

Watch: Jim Carter snaps back at Philip Schofield on This Morning

The National Domestic Abuse Helpline is open 24/7 on 0808 2000 247 while more information can be found on their website nationaldahelpline.org.uk.