Roache interview 'annoyed' alleged victim

Roache interview 'annoyed' alleged victim

A woman who claims Coronation Street actor William Roache sexually assaulted her has told a court how a television interview that the actor had given had "really annoyed her".

The woman has accused Roach, who has played Ken Barlow in the soap for over 50 years, of making her perform a sex act on him while he gave her a lift home in his Rolls-Royce.

The alleged incident is said to have happened between June 1968 and September 1971.

Giving evidence at Preston Crown Court on Tuesday, the woman spoke about a television interview that Roach given in New Zealand last year.

She said: "He said young girls who were going through this; they are being punished from a previous life... something they had done. That really annoyed me."

She said her husband remarked that Roach was "nuts" and added: "Who is he to judge?"

Prosecutor Anne White asked the witness if any other comments by the defendant had affected her.

The complainant replied: "He said girls were always hanging around the studios and they were throwing themselves at them... star-struck.

"The girls that we saw were like us. I can never say that I saw any girls throwing themselves at anyone.
"There were actually boys there as well."

The woman first contacted police about the alleged sexual assault in May last year, after it emerged that Roach had been arrested on suspicion of raping a young girl.

She was asked by Miss White if that had had any effect.

She replied: "She made me feel a coward because she came forward first. She had guts to do it.

"She was brave enough to do it.

"I didn't have the guts to do it first."

Roach, 81, of Winslow, Cheshire, denies two counts of rape and five counts of indecent assault involving five complainants aged 16 and under.

The alleged assaults are said to have happened on dates between 1965 and 1971.

Earlier, in a police interview played to the court, the woman said she was with a friend autograph-hunting outside Granada Studios in Manchester when Roach offered them a lift home in his Silver Cloud Rolls.

The witness's sister, who is two years older, claimed Roach indecently assaulted her on a separate occasion when she was aged 14, after they were both invited inside the studios by the defendant.


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