Tindallgate bouncer: My one regret (+ Q&A)


The Queenstown bouncer at the centre of the Mike Tindall footage saga admits one regret – he was too scary on camera. 

Jonathan Dixon, due back in court on Monday, says more people seem to like Libyan tyrant Colonel Gaddafi than him. 

“That’s what I heard – more people like Gaddafi,” Dixon says this week. 

Dixon was thrust into the media spotlight after posting footage to YouTube showing English rugby star Tindall – recently married to royal Zara Phillips – cavorting with a mystery blonde in Altitude Bar. That woman’s now been named as old Tindall flame Jessica Palmer. 

Dixon spliced in video of himself pontificating on Tindall’s behaviour. At one point Dixon says: “Mr Tindall, your behaviour was that of someone unbecoming, especially to someone such as the Queen or Zara Phillips.” 

Dixon adds: “Nobody’s going to make a cent off this video.” 

Asked if he’d do anything differently, Dixon now says: “Ah, I wouldn’t have been so scary in the video. 

“Because some of the people said after about 30 seconds they didn’t give a stuff about Tindall – it was ‘My God, this guy’s crazy’.” 

Dixon says it was very early in the morning when he made it and he’d just come from a meeting where people were strategising how to make maximum money off the Tindall footage. 

“I was pissed off. I thought ‘I’m going to take this footage and put it up’.” 

Dixon wouldn’t comment further about who’d been trying to make money out of it – but says it’ll all come out in court. 

Asked why he made himself look so intimidating, Dixon says: “That’s just me. I understand it was a bit melodramatic. But if you had Mike Tindall in a room and were going to give him a piece of your mind, what would you say?” 

Dixon maintains he’s made no money off it. Not only that, he says it’s also cost him web development contracts because police have confiscated his computer gear. 

Spartar Security, which employed Dixon at the time of the Tindall incident, has also suspended him pending the outcome of an internal hearing. 

Dixon, who has pleaded not guilty to unlawfully obtaining video surveillance, reappears in Queens­town District Court this Monday for a status hearing. 

Ironically, he may share the courtroom with a man who Dixon claims punched him and ripped his shirt off when he was ejecting him from Queenstown’s Ministry Bar last Saturday night. Dixon claims the man and a mate were spitting chewed-up French bread in people’s faces after France won its Rugby World Cup quarter-final over England.

Q&A with Jonathan Dixon
MOUNTAIN SCENE: Why do you film your court appearances?
“That’s about what happens when the world’s media turns its attention on you. I was just wondering what that’s like – I haven’t seen anything like that from the point of view of an average Joe Blow, so I thought I’d just tape it. I’ll show people what it’s like. The media is filming me. This is what it’s like from the other side of things. And I’ll film them. It’s kind of curious.”

MS: Were you the source for the original story in The Sun which broke the news about Tindall cosying up to a mystery blonde in Altitude bar prior to your YouTube footage going up?
“That may not have been me because they talked to lots of people. I thought it could have been me, but they had talked to other people. I was contacted by The Sun. I gave no permission for anything like that to happen.”
MS: Why’d you take your piece off YouTube?
JD: “Because a mate called me up and says ‘Hey, nice one. Take it off’. When a friend asks you to do something and he has a valid point. He didn’t have one, didn’t have to, he just said take it off. I kind of got the point that it’s out there. My objective was done.”
MS: You say you’ve heard more people like Gaddafi than you. What’s the worst reactions you’ve had?
JD: “99 per cent of people who’ve come up to me – and a lot of them are Brits – have said ‘Good on you mate, you’ve got balls’. It’s not like they’re backing anything to do with [my alleged] crime or anything, it’s just the meaning of the message. It’s wrong and someone needed to tell him off. And it took a Kiwi bouncer to say Mike Tindall, ‘I don’t give a shit who you are. You should respect your wife, be loyal to the royal’.”

MS: When you hear more people like Gaddafi than you…what’s your reaction?
JD: “I thought it was funny. I’m a bouncer. You kind of get used to the abuse after 20 years. If it was my friends and family it hits home hard. But they trust me that I would have made the right decision in the end. And I still believe I made the right decision in the end.”
MS: Doesn’t this all send a message that if you come to Queenstown and you’re high profile and get up to something that someone doesn’t think is appropriate…it’s going to be made public? What gives you that right?
“Mark Sainsbury asked the same thing, dumb question. Let’s ask that question in another way. If you’re thinking about coming to NZ or if you’re thinking about coming to Queenstown to fool around behind your partner’s back, you should be wary of people like me. You go to Bangkok or Thailand – apparently – to do that kind of stuff. Where you have no morals. They shouldn’t associate that same thought pattern with New Zealand.” 

MS: Regarding the CCTV footage of Tindall and the blonde – there’s nothing really that bad is there?
JD: “Not all the footage came out, baby.” 

MS: Can you go into some of the things in your life that you’re not proud of. Put your cards on table?
JD: “No. That is a personal thing. This is infidelity. I’ve never done a sin as bad as that.” 

MS: Any contact from royal family, MI6 spooks?
“Let’s just say everything got hacked real quick and they shut me down for about a day and a half. My geeks came to me and said whatever they did they did it well. In terms of shutting everything down from emails, to tube sites even private emails I had. Everything got shut down for about 24 hours. I’m not saying it’s a conspiracy.”
MS: Thoughts on your appearance on Close Up with Mark Sainsbury?
“Mark Sainsbury ripped me apart. That wasn’t the 55-minute Close Up interview at all. I said to him is all I want is a fair, unbiased and balanced interview. I even had him up about ripping me apart.” 

MS: How long have you been in Queenstown?
JD: “I came here for a while a few years back…then shot off again, studied for my Masters, at Otago Uni, in business. I didn’t complete it because of family stuff. I did a bit of tiki touring. I worked for university with senior graduates in certain areas of management and communications.” 

MS: You’re very qualified bouncer?
“The thing is man, I am. Out of all of Queenstown and because of my years of experience and because of my background and I’ve written papers and worked for colleges of security in NZ. The thing is when you say bouncer, people get this misconception of a big thick guy.”

MS: Going to stay in Queenstown?
“I don’t ski a lot. I made it through winter because Queenstown in summer is just the best. I like Queenstown, it’s got real nice people. And the thing is it’s a transient town. Really when you live in Queenstown, you don’t have to travel anymore, like go around the world, because the world comes here because you get to meet all these people.”

See also: