Jimmy Savile memorial plaque vandalised

 

Anger over Sir Jimmy Savile's alleged sex abuse, as more women make claims they were victims over many years, has led to a memorial being attacked and fears of further reprisals.

A historic rape allegation made against the late Top Of The Pops host has been referred to Scotland Yard by police in Surrey, and there have been revelations that other allegations against Savile were dropped because of a lack of evidence.

The BBC has said it will assist police with investigations into child abuse claims involving the DJ and TV host, with the testimonies of a number of alleged victims due to be screened tonight in a TV documentary.

A circular gold plaque in Scarborough, where the presenter had a home, was subject to a graffiti attack with the words "rapist" and "paedophile" written on it.

And authorities in the North Yorkshire town say they are now reviewing security at the cemetery where his headstone was placed, following his death last year. A statue of the star has also been taken down in Glasgow.

A number of police forces have confirmed they have received complaints of assaults by the Jim'll Fix It host over the years.

Jersey and Surrey police said they had both investigated accusations made against the entertainer about alleged abuse in two children's homes, but decided there was not enough evidence to proceed.

And police in Sussex today confirmed that in 2008 a woman reported she had been indecently assaulted by Savile in Worthing in 1970. However the woman said she did not wish to co-operate with any inquiry or prosecution.

The attack on the Scarborough memorial led to an appeal from North Yorkshire Police to refrain from committing further damage.

A spokeswoman said: "Police will investigate any allegations of criminal damage and deal with them appropriately.

"We would ask people that even if emotions are running high, not to engage in any criminal acts as they will be dealt with in the same way as any other criminal activity."

Scarborough Borough Council said it was looking at security issues in case of attacks to Sir Jimmy's gravestone.

Andy Skelton, the council's head of environmental services, said: "We can confirm that we are reviewing the security arrangements in relation to Woodlands Cemetery."

In a new interview with ITV News, one woman today claimed Sir Jimmy would ply her fellow pupils from Duncroft Approved School in Surrey with gifts and he would have sex with girls as young as 14.

Karin Ward, who has waived her anonymity, said: "Everybody knew he was a perv and everybody knew he would be groping and wanting sex and wanting other worse things than just plain sex but he brought lots of nice things with him."

On one occasion when she visited his dressing room for the recording of a TV show, she said: "Jimmy Savile had a girl on his lap and he had his hand up her skirt and inside her underwear. She came from Duncroft and she was 14 and we were good friends."

A poll for ITV's This Morning today found four-fifths of viewers believed Sir Jimmy should be stripped of his knighthood.

Yesterday the BBC said it would be working with police over allegations about the presenter's sex abuse, following claims that some activities went on at BBC premises and suggestions that some colleagues were aware of his behaviour.

A spokesman for the BBC said: "A number of serious and disturbing allegations have been made over the past few days about the sexual abuse of teenage girls by Jimmy Savile.

"Some of these allegations relate to activity on BBC premises in the 1960s and 70s. We are horrified by allegations that anything of this sort could have happened at the BBC - or have been carried out by anyone working for the BBC.

"We have today asked the BBC investigations unit to make direct contact with all the police forces in receipt of allegations and offer to help them investigate these matters and provide full support to any lines of inquiry they wish to pursue."

In an interview today, Coleen Nolan revealed that Sir Jimmy suggested she join him at a hotel following a TV recording when she was just 14.

She had been in the Top Of The Pops studio, along with her chart star sisters who were appearing on the show.

Speaking on ITV1's Alan Titchmarsh Show, she said: "At the time I was 14 and it was just an uncomfortable situation.

"The girls were doing Top Of The Pops and I stood with him while he made the announcement and it was an uncomfortable situation, the way he held me and then he mentioned about going to a hotel. But you didn't talk about those things then."

PA

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