Katie Price praises stepfather but stays away from court to avoid 'media circus'
Model Katie Price spoke of her love for her stepfather amid allegations he twice raped a woman following a group night out in a seaside resort, a court has heard.
The television personality described Paul Price, 53, as a "loving" and "fun" person who despite not being her biological father she regards as "my dad".
Her feelings for her father were read in a statement to Chichester Crown Court in West Sussex, where Price denies two counts of rape.
In the statement, read in her absence by defence counsel Abigail Penny, Ms Price said: "My dad Paul Price has always been so loving and such a fun person to be around.
"He is always supportive in all situations and always puts us family first.
"Although he is not my biological dad, he took me and my brother on from a young age and I regard him as my dad.
"I know he is there for me for everything. In fact you can't keep people away - he is a people person."
Ms Price, 38, also told how Price was "amazing" with his grandchildren, including her son Harvey, who has disabilities.
Her statement went on: "I want to come to court to support my dad but because of the media interest it's best I don't attend as I don't want a media circus."
Her statement was read after Price's 27-year-old daughter Sophie Price broke down in tears as she defended her father, describing him as "fun" and "nice".
Asked by Ms Penny how she feels about her father in light of the rape allegations, she told the court: "The same, fine, normal. I don't look at him any differently.
"I love my dad."
Price, a fence erector, is alleged to have twice raped a woman following a group night out in Worthing on March 21 last year.
Prosecutors claim he raped the alleged victim first after following her out of a taxi when she complained of feeling sick en route to his home.
It is then alleged a second rape occurred in woodland after the pair got back into a taxi and got dropped off near Price's home in North Drive, Angmering. He said on both occasions he could not get an erection.
The woman has said she feared Price was going to kill her as he had his hands round her throat, telling jurors: "The ferocity with which he grabbed me was shocking."
In his defence, Price said she consented to sex, that she never resisted or told him to stop and that she returned with him to his house following the alleged attacks where she and her husband were staying that night.
Price told jurors they had been laughing and joking after getting out of the taxi, then started to cuddle, kiss and hold hands before she told him: "I haven't had sex for a year."