Lib Dem crisis: Mike Hancock's son arrested after allegedly punching photographer
Hancock Snr has been suspended from the party after claim of sexual assault
The son of a Liberal Democrat MP currently contesting sex assault claims has been arrested after an incident involving a photographer outside his father's house.
Dean Hancock, 37, has been charged with assault causing actual bodily harm following an incident involving a photographer, Hampshire police said. He was released on bail and will appear at Fareham Magistrates Court on February 12.
His father, Mike Hancock, who has been an MP for 19 years, was suspended from the party on Wednesday after the fresh allegations hit. The claims come at a terrible time for the party, whose leader Nick Clegg is still trying to negotiate way out of the Lord Rennard affair.
And just before 9.30am on Thursday, police were called to Mr Hancock's house following reports of an altercation between a man and members of the media.
Journalists at the scene reported the man as being Mr Hancock's son.
A Hampshire police spokesman said: “A reporter received an injury to his nose during the incident.
“Police officers attended and are conducting an investigation into the circumstances surrounding the incident.
“A 37-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of assault, and is being taken into custody where he will be interviewed by officers today."
Mr Hancock's suspension came after the leak of a report commissioned by Portsmouth City Council - where he sits as a councillor - into the allegations against him. The authority decided not to publish the document, or discuss its findings, until a High Court case has been settled.
But a full version of the report by Nigel Pascoe QC, containing a series of lurid allegations, was leaked to a website. The barrister described the woman’s version of events as “credible” and concluded there was evidence of “serious and unwelcome sexual behaviour” by the MP. A Liberal Democrat spokesman said the party saw the report for the first time this afternoon. He said: “Given Nigel Pascoe QC’s conclusions in his report, we have immediately suspended Mike Hancock’s membership.”
Mr Hancock denies the allegations.
His spokesman said: “These matters have twice been looked at by the police, first in 2010, and in conjunction with the CPS [Crown Prosecution Service], they have found that there is no case for Mr Hancock to answer and have taken no further action.” He said Mr Hancock had not, following legal advice, given evidence to Mr Pascoe and therefore believed his report was “likely to be one-sided”.
'Nasa Confirms Six Days of Darkness in December': No, they don't - it's a hoax
Canadian actor punched in face after 'Islamophobia' experiment goes wrong in wake of Ottawa shooting
Tim Cook: Apple CEO comes out as gay publicly for the first time 'It's among the greatest gifts God has given me'
Topshop at centre of row over body image as 'shocking' skinny mannequin photo goes viral
Elizabeth Norment dead: House of Cards actress honoured by Kevin Spacey after she dies aged 61
Pope Francis declares evolution and Big Bang theory are real and God is not 'a magician with a magic wand'
Huge surge in Ukip support after EU funding row, according to new poll
Ukip ‘exploiting grooming scandal’ to secure party’s first police chief
Nigel Farage: 'There’s nothing wrong with white people blacking up'
Muslims, immigration and teenage pregnancy: British people are ignorant about almost everything
Maureen Lipman says 'she can't vote Labour while Ed Miliband is leader'
- 1 2015 General Election: Green party will not appear in TV debate alongside Ukip – says BBC
- 2 Canadian actor punched in face after 'Islamophobia' experiment goes wrong in wake of Ottawa shooting
- 3 Topshop at centre of row over body image as 'shocking' skinny mannequin photo goes viral
- 4 Kentucky gang rape: 15-year-old boy left in critical condition after sexual attack by group at party
- 5 Of course, teenage girls need role models – but not like beauty vlogger Zoella