A man who found fame after a dress worn by his mother-in-law at his wedding went viral due to its unusual colour properties has reportedly appeared in court charged with the attempted murder of his wife.
Keir Johnston, 38, from the Isle of Colonsay in Scotland, is alleged to have conducted an almost 11-year campaign of serious domestic violence and coercive control which resulted in him attempting to kill his wife, the Times reported.
He appeared at Glasgow high court on Monday and denied all the charges against him, with the case continued for a further preliminary hearing before a trial in 2024.
Keir Johnston’s mother-in-law’s dress was nicknamed The Dress That Broke the Internet. Photograph: AFP/Getty
Johnston faces allegations that he repeatedly assaulted his wife at their home in the Inner Hebrides, culminating in him attempting to strangle her. The charges, between April 2019 and March 2022, include pushing his wife against a wall, shouting at her and throttling her, and threatening to kill her and brandishing a knife towards her.
The Times and other outlets reported that he is also alleged to have attempted to enter a vehicle his wife was in and striking her through an open window, and allegedly placing her in a headlock and dragging her from a pub after she refused to leave with him. Further charges claim Johnston isolated his wife from her friends and monitored her movements and her finances.
Johnston’s mother-in-law’s dress was nicknamed The Dress That Broke the Internet, after it became a social media phenomenon in 2015 when it was shared on Tumblr by a guest at his wedding, Caitlin McNeill. She had appealed for help in solving the colour dilemma over whether the dress was blue and black or white and gold. Johnston’s subsequent media appearances included the Ellen DeGeneres Show.
Prosecutors claim that the couple’s relationship progressed into a series of violent attacks by Johnston that led to the attempted murder of his wife.
Johnston’s behaviour allegedly culminated in a further accusation that on 6 March 2022 he pinned his wife to the ground and sat astride her.
He allegedly proceeded to repeatedly place his hands around her neck and compress, restricting her breathing while making threats of violence.
Johnston is then claimed to have threatened to kill her and brandished a knife at her, all to her injury and to the danger of her life.