Plus, coming up on Corrie…
Coronation Street star Michael Le Vell, who plays Kevin Webster, has called for a change in the law after he was publicly named as a suspect when an unnamed woman accused him of rape.
Michael was arrested last September after the woman told police he’d raped her when she was six years old. And at Christmas, the CPS threw the case out due to lack of evidence.
But of course, by then, the accusation was out there, and as Michael told a friend, “mud sticks”.
Speaking to the People, Michael said, “No one should have to go through what I’ve been through.
“These are the worst sort of allegations anyone could face. Saying I raped a kid, it’s just horrific.
“It’s wrong that people can be named like this. It’s been worse for me because I’m well-known, I’m high-profile. Things need to change.
“People’s identities should remain secret until they are convicted of a crime like this.
“I’m thrilled the allegations have been dropped, but I’ll always have this with me.
“Some people will always think ‘There’s no smoke without fire’ even though the claims were a complete lie.”
Michael learned that the CPS had thrown out the case when he returned from holiday.
Of that, he said, “I was dreading coming home, I didn’t know what was going to happen.
“I was due to go to the police station this week to see if I was being charged or not.
“It’s been a nightmare, but at least now I’ve been able to relax and enjoy the last week of my holiday.”
People goes on to say, “Under British law the Criminal Justice Act of 1988 allows defendants in rape cases to be named.
“But anyone who claims to have been the victim of a sexual assault is granted life-long anonymity in law.”
Michael also told relatives, “The last three months of my life have been absolute hell.
“I knew I was innocent all along, but my name was still dragged through the mud because someone had made untrue allegations.
“At times, I felt like throwing myself under a bus. I was in a bad way.”
While discussing the moment he learned that the charges against him had been dropped, Michael said, “I was in tears when I heard the news.
“It’s been a struggle trying to stay sane throughout all of this.
“I’m thrilled the charges have been dropped, but deep down I know I’ll always have this with me.”
However, he added, “Everyone at work has been brilliant, they’ve backed me 100 per cent. They never doubted me for a second.
“I can’t thank them enough. I know it was a risk for them. But they supported me through it all.”
Let’s hope he can now put it all behind him.
Moving on, and coming up on Corrie, Faye Windass is about to cause a whole heap of problems for her mum Anna and her boyfriend, Owen Armstrong.
Faye has never pretended she likes Owen, and is jealous of how much of her mum’s time he takes up, so she’s plotted various ways of having digs at him, but her latest scheme is to poison his fish.
Needless to say, when the fish die and Owen finds out it was because of Faye, he’s furious, and after hours of goading – when Faye and Owen are alone while Anna’s visiting a sick relative – he ends up smacking the youngster.
A show insider told the Daily Star, “Owen is devastated when he sees his fish floating in the pond.
“And when he discovers that it was Faye who did it he is furious.
“He then does the unthinkable and lashes out, leaving the poor girl terrified.
“Faye has never liked Owen and wants her new mum all to herself so he’s gone and given her all the ammunition she needs to split them up.
“Anna is very protective of Faye and there is no way she will let Owen get away with hitting her.
“It’s going to be a very difficult time for all concerned, especially as Anna knows just how much Faye hates her being in a relation- ship with Owen.”
We’ll get to see this drama, and Anna’s reaction, on Monday, January 16 at 8.30pm on ITV1.
More Corrie news soon!