A celebrated chef has been stalking and spying on his former partner when she started dating another man, a court has learned.
Jealous David Watts repeatedly made unannounced and uninvited visits to his ex-Melissa Gray’s home.
He would spy on her and her male companion through the windows.
The Raymond Blanc-trained chef, 43, also tampered with security cameras at her home.
And once he remarked that he would like to kill her new husband.
Watts, who ran the Crown Inn in Upton, Hants, began a relationship with Ms Gray in 2021 and had a child with her.
But he was fixed when they split earlier this year, Basingstoke Magistrates’ Court learned.
Prosecutor Serena Edwards said: “He considers his behavior to be excessive.”
Watts admitted to stalking and will be sentenced next month.
How to get help
Women’s Aid has this advice for victims and their families:
- Keep your phone close at all times.
- Contact charities for help, including the Women’s Aid live chat hotline and services like SupportLine.
- If you are in danger, call 999.
- Familiarize yourself with the Silent Solution, where you report abuse without speaking on the phone, instead dialing “55”.
- Carry some money with you at all times, including change for a phone or bus ticket.
- If you suspect your partner is going to attack you, try moving to a lower-risk area of the house—for example, where there is an exit and access to a phone.
- Avoid the kitchen and garage where there may be knives or other weapons. Avoid rooms where you could be trapped, such as the bathroom, or where you could be trapped in a closet or other small space.
If you are a victim of domestic violence, SupportLine is available Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday from 6pm to 8pm on 01708 765200. The charity’s email support service is available weekdays and weekends during the crisis – firstname.lastname@example.org.
Women’s Aid offers a live chat service – available on weekdays from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. and on weekends from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
You can also call the 24-hour toll-free Domestic Violence Helpline on 0808 2000 247.