Nigella Lawson, the popular English cook who found success both in cookbooks and with her own Food Network show, has reportedly left her home after photos were leaked showing her husband choking her as they engaged in heated discussion at a restaurant.
Lawson married millionaire businessman and art dealer Charles Saatchi in 2003 after her first husband died of throat cancer, and the two have reportedly argued in public before; Saatchi allegedly put his hand over their mouth while they were having dinner together last year. She’s spoken of his fiery temper before, but there haven’t been any indications that her marriage is in trouble.
In 2007 she said, “I’ll go quiet when he explodes, and then I am a nest of horrible festeringness.”
Onlookers were horrified as they watched Saatchi put his hands around his wife’s neck no fewer than four times during their argument, and that Lawson was trying to pacify him to avoid a big scene.
“I have no doubt she was scared,” an onlooker told The Sunday People. “It was horrific, really. She was very tearful and was constantly dabbing her eyes. Nigella was very, very upset.”
The incident was captured on film and the photos, which were published on The Mirror , are being investigated by Scotland yard. Lawson was seen leaving her home on Sunday with her son, and both were carrying suitcases. Sadly, Lawson was the victim of abuse as a child at the hands of her mother and has said she has a “relentless need to please people” as a result, because she never felt good enough.
“While it is shocking to see someone as high-profile as Nigella Lawson linked to an alleged attack by her partner, it is vital to remember that domestic violence is actually extremely prevalent, with one in four women being abused by a partner at some point in her lifetime. Many women do not tell anyone because they feel embarrassed or ashamed. Having this story in the news is likely to resonate with many women currently living with abuse, and it is important to remind everyone that there is help and support out there,” said Polly Neate, Chief Executive of Women’s Aid.
Neither Lawson nor Saatchi have commented on the incident or their relationship so far.