A Michael Jackson impersonator and one-time Britain’s Best Dad, sobbed today as he was sentenced for attacking his wife during a Christmas row.
Keith Preddie, 44, cried throughout the ten-minute hearing at Croydon Magistrates’ Court in south London and sobbed, at one point burying his face into his chest.
On December 18 last year he spent all day shopping for presents.
When he got home he asked his wife Emma if she had any presents for his mother. She told him she had already given her a gift.
Preddie, who was crowned Britain’s Best Dad by GMTV in 2010, threw a washing frame and a plastic step at Mrs Preddie and shouted that he had spent all day shopping for a gift for her and was angry she had not told him.
Preddie, who also appeared on Channel 4’s Come Dine With Me in 2011, pinned her to the floor at their Croydon home before police arrived and he admitted attacking her.
The couple’s 12-year-old daughter was woken by the violence.
Preddie, of Stanger Road, south Norwood, admitted one count of assault.
As he was given a conditional discharge yesterday he burst into tears again. District judge Alan Baldwin told him: “It’s no good crying. You have got to face up to this.”
He added: “I don’t want to condone in any way what you did and I don’t say violence of any sort should be tolerated or condoned, particularly domestic violence.
“A man of your background should have known better. But fortunately for you, this is a single incident.
“Fortunately, the complainant didn’t suffer serious injuries and I don’t really think there was any pre-meditation or forethought.
“You are a man of 44 and no previous convictions.”
Preddie broke down in tears again as Judge Baldwin referred to his good character doing voluntary work for four pensioners who cannot do their own shopping.
The court received numerous character references for the Prince of Pop pretender.
Judge Baldwin said: “I have read the references and you are clearly a man of positive good character who has done a lot of good things and continue to do so. You have shown a great deal of remorse and understanding of what took place and taken steps to deal with it.
“I consider it a momentary lapse in an otherwise unblemished life.”
Preddie, supported in court by a throng of well-wishers, left the dock in tears and rushed into a nearby disabled toilet helped by an elderly lady.
He and his wife are in the process of divorcing.
He was also ordered to pay £100 compensation to Mrs Preddie, £85 costs and a £15 victim surcharge.
Preddie is thought to have become Britain’s first professional Wacko Jacko impersonator in 1986.
He reportedly helped set up the charity It’s Time for Dads after starting work at the Family Centre in New Addington in 2003.
During his appearance on Come Dine With Me, Preddie irritated other contestants by persistently using Jackson’s “Shamone” catchphrase.