Roache trial jury considers verdicts

Published Wednesday, 05 February 2014
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The jury in the trial of Coronation Street's William Roache has been sent home and will return to resume its deliberations on Thursday.

Roache trial jury considers verdicts
Coronation Street actor William Roache. (© Getty)

The jury retired to consider its verdicts on Wednesday, but failed to reach a decision.

The actor, who has played Ken Barlow in the long-running soap for more than 50 years, is accused of a number of sex offences.

He denies two counts of rape and four charges of indecent assault involving five complainants.

The alleged incidents are said to have happened between the mid-60s and early 70s, either at Granada Studios in Manchester, in Roache's car or at properties he owned.

During the four week trial at Preston Crown Court, the actor said he did not even know any of his accusers.

The prosecution says the actor was "sticking to his script" in lying and if he was telling the truth, he was the victim of a "huge, distorted and perverse witch-hunt".

Anne Whyte QC depicted Roache as a young man with "looks, fame and appetite" at the relevant time, which gave him the "motivation and the opportunity to behave improperly''.

She said his fame "put him out of reach" with his belief that none of the women would be brave enough to report him.

"Decades of silence" followed but times had changed now, she told the jury of eight women and four men.

Last week, Roache's Coronation Street co-stars Anne Kirkbride, Chris Gascoyne and Helen Worth gave evidence in court for the defence.

Kirkbride, who plays Roache's on-screen wife Deirdre Barlow, told the jury he was "always a perfect gentleman" towards her.

Louise Blackwell QC, defending, said the case against her client was "nonsense", with the trial haunted by the "spectre" of Jimmy Savile.

© UTV News
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1 Comments
mary gillies in belfast wrote (209 days ago):
whilst my heart goes out to anyone who has ever been the victim of sexual abuse or any abuse for that matter. i just cant understand all the different indivduals alledged to have suffered at the hands off william roache waiting 40 odd years to come forward, im totally baffled and i sure would not like to be a member of the jury.
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