|Appeared in||8 episodes|
|Family||Claire Ripley wife|
Lee Ashworth was the husband of Claire Ashworth and Alec Hardy's prime suspect in the Sandbrook kidnapping case. A neighbour to the abducted children, Lee had no alibi for the night of the kidnapping but convinced his wife to say he was with her. Claire didn't want to tell the police the truth about that night for fear of what Lee would do to her, but Hardy had convinced her that she would be safe if she incriminated him. However, Lee Ashworth managed to not be convicted, and Claire was taken away by Alec to protect her from him.
Lee left the country, but returned 3 days before Episode 2.1 takes place, when he returned and went to Broadchurch to get his wife and his life back. He broke into Hardy's house and stole sensitive information from him, including a medical letter. Later, Hardy arranged a meeting between Lee and Claire at the house of Ellie Miller, with him and Miller guarding the house to prevent any harm from coming to Claire. After unbuttoning her shirt to make sure she wasn't wearing a wire, Lee took advantage of the commotion outside between Beth Latimer and Ellie to escape the house with his wife, leaving Hardy with neither the key suspect of the Sandbrook case nor the key witness he was supposed to be protecting.