Rolf Harris has been charged

(183 Posts)

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TensionWheelsCoolHeels Thu 29-Aug-13 11:55:40

Can't link as on phone but just got a news flash saying he's been charged with 9 counts of indecent assault, and 4 to do with indecent images.

georgedawes Thu 29-Aug-13 11:57:20
Youhaventseenme Thu 29-Aug-13 11:58:42
ihatethecold Thu 29-Aug-13 11:58:52

I'm quite shocked at that.

filee777 Thu 29-Aug-13 12:00:24

I must say I thought it would all be hot air. What a shame I see Rolf as a bit of a legend. If they have charged him they must think there is enough evidence to get a conviction. 9 counts is a lot too.
What a shame.

PoppyAmex Thu 29-Aug-13 12:00:40

Me too, ihatethecold.

Of course it's ridiculous to think we can judge someone's character by just watching them on the media and without really "knowing them", but I just didn't expect to see his name connected to this case.

SPBisResisting Thu 29-Aug-13 12:00:41

Wow. How awful.

Bloody hell, guess it shows that there's no "type".

Be nice to think that we could tell wouldn't it? Hard to see someone you looked up to being so.. eurgh..

ClartyCarol Thu 29-Aug-13 12:13:29

Why did anyone look up to him? He wobbled a board about, sang daft songs, drew some pictures and blubbed a bit at poorly animals. Oh, and did some very creepy water safety adverts in the 1970s grappling with children in a swimming pool hmm.

mignonette Thu 29-Aug-13 12:15:22

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

clarty As a child he seemed like a friendly loveable grandfather figure, someone you'd have loved to meet. I used to love him when I was little.

Clargo55 Thu 29-Aug-13 12:21:51

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BrokenSunglasses Thu 29-Aug-13 12:23:04

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Ponders Thu 29-Aug-13 12:23:40

images not necessarily photographs in his case?

Remember chatting to someone who worked in a shop where Rolf was a regular, they had nothing but praise for him. I remember being so jealous we just got Timmy Mallett

Faezy Thu 29-Aug-13 12:25:18

Can you link please mignonette?

Clargo55 Thu 29-Aug-13 12:26:33

True Ponders, I should have said images.

mignonette Thu 29-Aug-13 12:27:30

Faezy it was on one of the threads that I think got deleted around the time of that litigious Lord who was falsely accused. So not able to link, sorry.

From the Beeb

"Six offences relate to the indecent assault of a girl aged 15-16 between 1980 and 1981 and three relate to a girl aged 14 in 1986.

The indecent images of children were alleged to have been made last year."

Last year?! Fucking hell..

Faezy Thu 29-Aug-13 12:31:17

oh that's a shame, sounded like some interesting reading.

RippingYarns Thu 29-Aug-13 12:31:30

It's made me sad that another previously respected entertainer has been charged, but I'm glad he has.

The excuses of 'they were all at it' and 'we didn't have laws against it back then' should not be tolerated.

mignonette Thu 29-Aug-13 12:32:51

I was appalled that this psychiatrist covered it up for so long. In Total contravention of the laws protecting children.

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Clargo55 Thu 29-Aug-13 12:34:29

According to DM, images were made in March to July 2012.

bootsycollins Thu 29-Aug-13 12:35:00

My cousin used to work for a publishing house, she caught Rolf staring at her arse when he came to the office about his book.

Dh met him at Butlins in the 80's and Rolf drew him a Rolferoo, no idea what happened to it.

I'm really gutted, he cried when a dog had to be put down on Animal Hospital the bastard. Oh no ponders do you reckon the images are his artistic creations?

ClartyCarol Thu 29-Aug-13 12:35:23

MurderofGoths sorry if I sounded snarky. I just always found him to be really creepy so could never see the appeal or why everyone seemed so fond of him.

Migonette - I think I remember that. Was it not his neighbour's daughter he was accused of assaulting but it was then covered up?

I remember the allusions to RH coming out when the Jimmy Savile furore started.

mignonette Thu 29-Aug-13 12:35:32

Well he is innocent until proven guilty but as I have said, good that both sides can put their case.

MissBracegirdle Thu 29-Aug-13 12:35:42

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JumpingJackSprat Thu 29-Aug-13 12:36:02

Sooo there hasnt been a trial or a guilty verdict. charged doesnt mean guilty.

bootsycollins Thu 29-Aug-13 12:36:39

I get so pissed off at the "it was a different world back then" shite pedlars

MissBracegirdle Thu 29-Aug-13 12:37:28

No he isn't guilty, but how many counts is it? I am glad he will be prosecuted and if innocent, well so be it.

bootsycollins Thu 29-Aug-13 12:37:48

Innocent until proven guilty but there's enough evidence for him to be charged with very serious offences.

Clargo55 Thu 29-Aug-13 12:38:30

Me too Bootsy.

KatyPutTheCuttleOn Thu 29-Aug-13 12:39:15

If he has done it then, well, there aren't words for it. I hope that all this is teaching younger people that there is no point in looking up to celebrities as it is now coming out that so many are alleged to have abused others and some have been charged including some that today's teenagers will look up to and respect.

mignonette Thu 29-Aug-13 12:40:13

Yes but it is legally very dubious to discuss this as though he is guilty and will prejudice the case. Maybe this thread should be deleted because of how it is going?

MissBracegirdle Thu 29-Aug-13 12:40:30

I found out that a family friend was a tv producer on some of the shows which starred people who were being investigated last year.

Talking to dh, I put it out there that the people who were working on the programmes needed to take a long hard look at why they didn't speak up, and that I wouldn't be looking at this man in the same light again.

DH was furious with me. He is firmly of the 'it was different then' school of thought. hmm

bootsycollins Thu 29-Aug-13 12:41:17

It's fucking sickening, I'm wondering whose gonna come out of the woodwork next sad

Those poor girls who have carried this around with them for all these years.

If he's guilty I'm genuinely saddened as I love his art work.

ChippingInNeedsSleepAndCoffee Thu 29-Aug-13 12:42:29

The images last year sounds like an odd thing.

Rooners Thu 29-Aug-13 12:43:22

I am so sorry but all I can think of in terms of him creating indecent images is him drawing some cartoon obscenity on a kangaroo while saying 'can you guess what it is yet?'

This is awful, I know. I shall not comment further, I am very very sorry for anyone affected by this man or any other. It's very sad to think he could have done bad stuff.

It was the making of indecent images last year that finally did it for me.

hagle Thu 29-Aug-13 12:44:20

"My cousin used to work for a publishing house, she caught Rolf staring at her arse when he came to the office about his book."

I don't think that is evidence of a man being a paedophile!

bootsycollins Thu 29-Aug-13 12:45:33

There's gonna be lots of digeredoo based jokes doing the rounds

AmberLeaf Thu 29-Aug-13 12:45:43

He was the one that I was most surprised to hear about.

I agree that it is best to say nothing about this in case of influencing the outcome of the court case.

bootsycollins Thu 29-Aug-13 12:46:27

I didn't say it was evidence of a man being a paedophile hmm

CiderBomb Thu 29-Aug-13 12:47:13

I'm fucking speechless about this. Always though that Jimmy Savile was dirt old creep, but Rolf! I can't believe it!

Rooners Thu 29-Aug-13 12:47:58

Yes and I am sorry to bring 'humour' into the thread at all - I hate those sorts of jokes. I want to say I didn't intend it like that - it's just so hard to imagine him out of the familiar context iykwim?

I believe the person who was 14 and the person who was 15 and 16. God knows the creepy men I've put up with over the years - I was lucky not to have anything more than a glance or an out of place hand to put up with in my teens.

bootsycollins Thu 29-Aug-13 12:48:30

I know, there has never been anything sinister about Rolf.

Rooners Thu 29-Aug-13 12:49:17

Savile was incredibly sinister. Rolf just seemed normal

How old was he in 1986? Could he have been a bit senile or something?

Rooners Thu 29-Aug-13 12:49:38

Sorry - that looks like making excuses. I'd better shut up.

JumpingJackSprat Thu 29-Aug-13 12:50:06

Yes theres charges but if being charged always meant guilty then there would never be any not guilty verdicts now would there?

NoComet Thu 29-Aug-13 12:52:28

I'm 45, so I was 14/15 around that time. Attitudes to teasing and flirting with teens have changed beyond all recognition.
The way some of our teachers behaved would have had many in jail today. Shop keepers, family friends, men working where you had your Saturday job, in fact men in general would eye up, cat call and flirt with any girl with boobs. Their was non of today's, is she 16 paranoia, unless they actually wanted full blown sex.

At that age I went out to disco's and got served in the local pub. I didn't even look particularly grown up.

Most DCs left school at 16 and many went straight to work.

We were probably not as sexually promiscuous in the sense of full intercourse (no condom machines), but we flirted hugged kissed and more. And because we met men at dances, in pubs and at young farmers events. Many of those men were 18-26ish not our peers.

Look back at Benny Hill, the Two Ronnie's any Saturday night 'family' sit com.

Yes things have got better for women in many ways, but we have lost a certain innocence, for want of a better word, in the way the sexes relate to each other.

Undoubtably, men used this relaxed atmosphere to cold and calculatingly, get away with assaulting girls they knew to be under age, but I feel others are being judged unfairly by today's rules. Today's rules are not the same.

DevastatedD0G Thu 29-Aug-13 12:53:46

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RowanMumsnet (MNHQ) Thu 29-Aug-13 12:55:18


Please be very careful not to say anything that could prejudice a fair trial.

Clargo55 Thu 29-Aug-13 12:56:15

And what about the creation of indecent images last year Star?

StillSeekingSpike Thu 29-Aug-13 12:57:13

I am a bit older than 45- and I couldn't disagree more. There were many men in those days who exploited, abused and assaulted girls and boys- knowing they would get away with it. The rules have always been the same- sex without consent is ASSAULT. It's just now men know they always have to be looking over their shoulders.
When I was at school, a parent of one of the girls found her diary where she'd written about her affair with a headteacher. When it go to court, the judge absolutely laid into her calling a fantasist ( and this guy was no fking prize, believe me).
But we all knew it was true. And one year later he started fking my friend, who was 15 at the time.

Clargo55 Thu 29-Aug-13 12:57:45

Sorry Rowan.

Onesleeptillwembley Thu 29-Aug-13 12:59:46

missbracegirdle it's more than possible the person you know wouldn't have known anything. So why you would look at them differently I haven't a clue. Sounds a bit hysterical. However your 'dh' has, by that comment, proved himself to be an apologist. Maybe you ought to be looking at him in a different way.

smallfaces Thu 29-Aug-13 14:01:26

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HeySoulSister Thu 29-Aug-13 14:05:28

I absolutely CAN believe this

And actually, as a child I always found RH too full on/eager to please.

nocarsgo Thu 29-Aug-13 14:06:40

Isn't "making indecent images" legal shorthand for downloading child porn?

m0nkeynuts Thu 29-Aug-13 14:13:32

"The "making" offence
Causing an indecent photograph of a child to exist on a computer screen is considered to be "making an indecent photograph of a child".
"A person who either downloads images on to disc or who prints them off is making them. The Act is not only concerned with the original creation of images, but also their proliferation. Photographs or pseudo-photographs found on the Internet may have originated from outside the United Kingdom; to download or print within the jurisdiction is to create new material which hitherto may not have existed therein." (R v Bowden (1999))"

From Wikipedia

member Thu 29-Aug-13 14:23:13

It can be nocarsgo, the making an image exist on a computer through downloading counts as does photographing or drawing.

Apart from discussing what the wording of the charges mean, I think any speculation puts a fair trial in jeopardy.

If internet forums are an accurate representation of wider society, it makes me absolutely despair at how lacking in knowledge the average person appears to be regarding the difference between being charged with an offence & being found guilty in a court of law.

member Thu 29-Aug-13 14:24:13

Sorry for cross post - delayed pressing post

Rooners Thu 29-Aug-13 19:18:28

He is in his 80s yes?

I can't help but wonder if this has something to do with it - perhaps he actually is losing his marbles.

Pan Thu 29-Aug-13 19:39:57

not sure at all about what you mean losing his marbles Rooners? Would/could that be mitigation in a finding of guilt?

a way of discussing these issues and probably staying the right side of being prejudicial is to discuss in generalities and not specifics. hth

Rooners Thu 29-Aug-13 19:45:24

I have no idea Pan.

It just occurs to me that a man who is 80 odd might be doing things as a result of a loss of cognitive function, more likely than a man in his 50s say.

Does that make sense?

Rooners Thu 29-Aug-13 19:46:21

Dementia in other words

I have zero info about the man in question though.

Pan Thu 29-Aug-13 19:53:10

oh sure Rooners - it feels like I am swiftly heading there meself.grin But that includes taking the wrong route in a car, wondering where the keys are when I am holding them in my hand.blush

Generally it doesn't include knowing where to go on the internet to access images of Latvian pig farming as I have v little interest in Latvian pig farming, for instance.

PurpleGirly Thu 29-Aug-13 19:59:49

starbunny I totally agree. Same age as you and was a large chested teen - often pinched and groped. Annoying but didn't ruin my life! Things were very different in then. However any abuse of a child is wrong.

Rooners Thu 29-Aug-13 20:05:36

Yes I see what you are saying Pan. One would need to be fairly far gone to want to look at latvian pig farming sites. It might also be difficult to establish a notable interest by mistake.

mignonette Thu 29-Aug-13 20:07:29

No, as a RMN and wife of a former RMN who managed a dementia unit, this is not a manifestation of the illness we recognise.

Rooners Thu 29-Aug-13 20:14:04

Ok. Sorry, forget I said anything. I am ignorant on the subject - sorry.

AmberLeaf Thu 29-Aug-13 20:16:31

He doesn't have dementia though does he? and the alleged offences were around 30 years ago when he was about 50 anyway. [I know 50 yr olds can have dementia, but he clearly didn't]

Pan Thu 29-Aug-13 20:22:49

Yes, generally many 'defences' and explanations are posited on stuff like this - clumsy fingers pressing the wrong keyboard key, it downloaded by accident when I was downloading something else, I really don't know about the internet etc.

mignonette Thu 29-Aug-13 20:26:17

That's okay Rooner.

Dementia type illnesses generally feature some disinhibition that is true. Some elderly people become sexually disinhibited and that is true. They may grope a young nurse/cleaner etc whereas they would never have behaved in that manner before. Generally though they stay true to sexual orientation.

That is true to desiring adults, say and they don't tend to change their sexual preferences and develop pedophilia. I have never seen it and nor has DH in combined 53 years of nursing. That's not to say that somebody will post that they have come across it but it would be rare for it to be a true sexual deviation at such a late age. Our sexuality might range along a spectrum in the opinion of many but that spectrum is generally quite narrow and influenced and shaped at a very young age.

Now when you imagine looking for illegal stuff like child porn online you can see it would take some level of cognitive function, of planning ,intent, the ability to sequence quite a few activities in order and organisation. That is the kind of functioning that gets lost quite easily w/ Dementia and in a generation that didn't grow up w/ sophisticated I.T, it is statistically even less likely that they would have that knowledge of the backwaters of the internet compared to say a 25 year old or 40 year old. I would imagine that they would also have trouble w/ secrecy too because lying requires huge cognitive health to do effectively.

eatyourveg Thu 29-Aug-13 20:28:55

I wonder if the images were in fact sketches or drawings which would have in the past been considered artwork?

Pan Thu 29-Aug-13 20:37:14

no eat - there is nothing illegal about drawing stuff at home. 'Making' in this context indicates an image manufactured off the internet.

AmberLeaf Thu 29-Aug-13 20:56:35

The images weren't from the past either, think they were from last year?

miemohrs Fri 30-Aug-13 00:29:56

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

edam Fri 30-Aug-13 08:39:13

Oh no, not Rolf! Always thought Stuart Hall and Jimmy Saville were creeps but Rolf seems such a nice guy.

I was hoping it was somehow a mistake, but the child porn stuff is something else. Unless it is the police misinterpreted a drawing rather than something downloaded from t'internet? <clutches at straw>

MrsBodger Fri 30-Aug-13 08:52:56

I had a work connection with Rolf back in the nineties. He was a really lovely guy - funny, clever, kind, creative, very loyal to his friends and (it seemed) his family. Definitely had an eye for a pretty girl, but never misbehaved.

But I guess someone can be a wonderful person and still do terrible things.

I just so hope it isn't true.

No. Someone can be a terrible person and simulate the behaviour of a wonderful human.

burberryqueen Fri 30-Aug-13 09:07:30

But I guess someone can be a wonderful person and still do terrible things
err no, wonderful men don't go around raping teenagers. Allegedly.

MrsBodger Fri 30-Aug-13 09:07:58

You're right, I know.

It's just upsetting to believe this of someone I liked and respected.

Rooners Fri 30-Aug-13 09:09:24

I am finding it hard to imagine how a downloaded image could be mistaken, it's either there or it isn't.

JakeBullet Fri 30-Aug-13 09:14:58

I am gutted, I'll be honest...I am. This is one of my childhood heroes, a man I met several times and who is lovely to talk to. His wife is lovely too and I am having a hard time reconciling that with a man who might be guilty of these charges.

I said on the other thread and will say here that there appears to have been a significant period of time where young girls were seen as "fair game" by many celebs. It isn't right and now the chickens are definitely coming home to roost.

I am wondering how many more are waiting to be discovered sad

RustyBear Fri 30-Aug-13 09:28:48

The images, whatever they were, could have been on his computer for ages and been copied with other stuff to a new one last year. The 'Date created' would be the day it was copied and, though other dates may or may not be retrievable, it may be that that is the date needed/used for a possible prosecution.

I'm not putting that forward as any kind of excuse or condemnation, just a possible reason why the date could be recent. There are of course other possibilities.

Rooners Fri 30-Aug-13 09:33:44

Oh Rusty that makes sense - well to a luddite it makes sense anyway! smile

Jake I know - somewhere in my collection of papers I have a lovely picture of him and his wife and their daughter, I remember a RT interview with him, as well. He seemed so great. I remember wishing our family was like that.

I'm a bit shocked at some of the comments on here. Just because someone looks and acts like a kind old grandad doesn't mean they aren't a child abuser. No wonder children are still not believed when these kinds of attitudes exist.

MrsBodger Fri 30-Aug-13 09:57:30

I think most of the comments you're referring to were just people expressing their shock and sadness, because Rolf always seemed such a great guy.

I don't think anyone's saying that it can't be true, just how awful it is if it is, because we liked him.

SPBisResisting Fri 30-Aug-13 10:08:51

I agree AKiss. It's one thing to express shock but people do seem to be grasping at any excuse/circumstances, while decalring the JS always seemed a bit dodgy.
If any good comes out of this, it's hopefully to drive it home that you simply cannot tell

Enb76 Fri 30-Aug-13 10:19:12

He's not proven guilty yet. I do find this all a bit of a witch hunt. I feel desperately sorry for his wife. I hope these charges come to nothing but whether they do or not it's a man's life and legacy ruined.

SPBisResisting Fri 30-Aug-13 10:21:23

Why do you hope that? I hope they establish the truth

miemohrs Fri 30-Aug-13 10:22:23

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

SinisterSal Fri 30-Aug-13 10:27:38

A witch hunt? you do know there are no such things as witches. but child abusers are real.

TheGirlFromIpanema Fri 30-Aug-13 10:27:40

After the thread that got deleted yesterday about this, I have to say I am unfortunately NOT shocked at some of the comments on this thread akiss.

I discovered to my quiet horror that there are regular posters who express disbelief of who are rapists/victims based solely on the look of that person shock

This thread is only showing small glimpses of what some stupid people will be thinking imo.

Feenie Fri 30-Aug-13 10:27:46

It just occurs to me that a man who is 80 odd might be doing things as a result of a loss of cognitive function, more likely than a man in his 50s say.

You could just have given his defence team an idea to work with there - if it hadn't occurred to them already. You just don't know, do you?

Staggered as always by the sheer numbers of MNers who either have no idea or don't care that their posts could be prejudicial to a fair trial.

eatyourveg Fri 30-Aug-13 10:31:32

It is horrible AKiss but I would like to think we should all go by the innocent until proven guilty beyond all reasonable doubt philosophy.

I think most of the comments you're referring to were just people expressing their shock and sadness, because Rolf always seemed such a great guy

No. I'm referring to comment like I wasn't surprised by Jimmy Savile because he always looked a bit dodgy, but not Rolf, he looks like a kind old grandad. FFS you can't tell by appearances

This is the same disbelief that kids experienced when trying to tell people they were being abused by a priest 'oh no not a priest how can you say such a thing about a religious man'. Have people learnt nothing from the past.

Rooners Fri 30-Aug-13 10:36:01

Feenie, if his defence team is taking ideas from MN punters then they are shit. I am happy to be deleted though if it makes a difference.

Feenie Fri 30-Aug-13 10:39:57

It's just an example of why you can't discuss the case until he is tried. If he is guilty, I don't want anything to prevent a prosecution - it's not unprecedented for a mistrial to be called because of trial by media, for example. It's only a matter of time before someone gets off scot free because of trial by social media/discussion boards.

As a poster said yesterday, god help some Mners if they are ever called for jury service.

Rooners Fri 30-Aug-13 10:45:01

I think a blanket ban on discussion would be necessary if that were the case. We can discuss it. It just matters what we say.

I am trying not to overstep the mark (not being legally trained I don't know exactly where it is) but if I manage to then deletion is fine by me.

Otherwise if the thread is deleted and we're asked not to discuss it I will respect that.

Feenie Fri 30-Aug-13 10:49:30

Threads about RH have already been deleted.

MN have 'Please be very careful not to say anything that could prejudice a fair trial'.

You have to be pretty thick to take that as an acceptance that it's okay to speculate on motives/guilt, etc, which people are still doing.

MN think it's better to allow MNers to use common sense, I think, and delete the idiots - but it inevitable goes tits up in these instances and they have to pull the thread. It's very tedious and depressing to watch.

AKiss Most of the comments about being surprised are because people have grown up liking Rolf, bit hard to hear that someone that you adored when you were a child is most likely a child abuser. If you've grown up looking at him as some archetypal cuddly grandfather type it's going to throw you a bit.

It's not stupid to wish it was obvious and avoidable. It's also not stupid to be surprised that someone seen as so kid friendly turns out to be more than friendly.

Maybe I've missed it, but I haven't seen any comments saying it can't be true because of how he looks. Just sadness that a man people have loved and who seemed lovely is possibly capable of something so horrific. At most I've seen people say they wish it wasn't true. Which isn't such a bad thing to wish for.

Rooners Fri 30-Aug-13 10:57:44

But Feenie you always come along and call us all thick on threads like this.

No one actually tells people what is Ok and what is not.

I think most people aren't legally minded or trained. This is a discussion forum - it's quite hard to switch into careful legal mode though I do think a lot of us are making an effort.

ithaka Fri 30-Aug-13 10:58:18

I am another who is upset & shocked by Rolf. Stuart Hall & Savile were creepy, but Rolf always seemed so lovely. You are allowed to be upset when a childhood idol lets you down spectacularly.

With Hall & Savile it appears to have been a lifelong obsession with young girls. In Rolf's case, I wonder if it was a mid life crisis period, which passed, or part of a life long pattern of abusing. I suppose it will all come out in court.

My thoughts are with the victims, if it turns out to be proven.

SinisterSal Fri 30-Aug-13 11:03:34

The fact that we are all shocked is exactly the point.

We still think you can spot an abuser. You can't. Not that RH is of course, as we don't know yet. But many kindly much loved grandfathers are.

The scale of credibility:

Respectable men
Respectable Women and children
Creepy men
Chavvy women and children
Chavvy creepy scumbags

imo, only

Feenie Fri 30-Aug-13 11:03:48

Just think before you post - it's not that difficult. Don't speculate about motives, or guilt - not until the trial is safely over. Then you won't have prejudiced anything. Simple.

Rooners Fri 30-Aug-13 11:05:50

I think they have only deleted about two messages so far. I think that's fairly good going.

(none of mine btw)

Feenie Fri 30-Aug-13 11:13:05

You should have seen yesterday's thread! It was carnage.

Feenie Fri 30-Aug-13 11:14:15

There are seven here, Rooners (so far). But still better, I guess.

TheGirlFromIpanema Fri 30-Aug-13 11:15:57

With Hall & Savile it appears to have been a lifelong obsession with young girls. In Rolf's case, I wonder if it was a mid life crisis period, which passed, or part of a life long pattern of abusing. I suppose it will all come out in court

My thoughts are with the victims, if it turns out to be proven

Can I ask if you only feel sorry for victims if the crime is able to be proven beyond reasonable doubt and a conviction secured then ithaka?

Genuinely wondering this.

Are you aware of the incredibly low rate of rape convictions in this country? Do you think that not many rapes actually are rapes then? Given these super low rates of guilty verdicts?

I tend to view this as it being extraordinarily difficult to obtain the physical evidence necessary to secure a conviction. But, ya know. That's just me.

Fwiw I have met several people who have gone through what might be described as a mid life crisis. Typically this has involved dressing younger, buying a motorbike and living vicariously through dc's as they approach adulthood.

AKAIK none of my acquaintances has ever taken up child molesting as part of their transition from young - to mid life hmm

TheGirlFromIpanema Fri 30-Aug-13 11:17:11

I wish everyone had seen yesterdays thread Feenie.

I felt like a lone voice of reason amongst MN rape apologists ffs.

I know who they were though

AmberLeaf Fri 30-Aug-13 11:17:39

In Rolf's case, I wonder if it was a mid life crisis period, which passed, or part of a life long pattern of abusing. I suppose it will all come out in court

Do you really think a man would sexually assault [allegedly] as part of a mid life crisis?

Most men buy a harley.

SPBisResisting Fri 30-Aug-13 11:24:07

". I do find this all a bit of a witch hunt. I feel desperately sorry for his wife. I hope these charges come to nothing but whether they do or not it's a man's life and legacy ruined."

Murderofgoths heres one which seems to be assuming his innocence

Ah ok, missed that one. The majority weren't like that thankfully.

Rooners Fri 30-Aug-13 11:33:24

Oh Ok seven.

Sorry. I didn't check back.

I went out yesterday so didn't see it descend.

burberryqueen Fri 30-Aug-13 12:24:50

In Rolf's case, I wonder if it was a mid life crisis period, which passed, or part of a life long pattern of abusing. I suppose it will all come out in court
oh please men with a mid life crisis go on a diet or grow a beard or something.

InsultingBadger Fri 30-Aug-13 12:39:02

Bloody hell. I am so gutted at this one as I really thought he wouldn't be. My happy childhood tv memories are slowly being wiped out...

georgedawes Fri 30-Aug-13 13:00:27

Mid life crisis shock

People abuse others because they get off on the power of it, it isn't even about sex per se. That is one of the most uneducated and offensive comments I've read on here.

nocarsgo Fri 30-Aug-13 13:28:45

I'm shocked by the number of people lining up to make excuses - maybe a mid life crisis, maybe dementia, maybe "erotic drawings"?

Let's just wait and see what happens on court, eh? I loved Rolf when I was a child too, but that doesn't mean he hasn't (allegedly) done dreadful things.

SPBisResisting Fri 30-Aug-13 13:29:44

Coildnt agree more noscar

ithaka Fri 30-Aug-13 13:35:10

I am sorry to have offended people with my 'mid life crisis' comment. It was just a musing that maybe he hadn't been an offender all his life, like Savile & Hall, but had a period when he went for young girls (instead of getting a Harley and/or having an affair).

I can see that I am just looking for excuses for him, I just hope he didn't do it, for everyone's sake.

I do appreciate that you cannot tell what someone is capable of based on their outside appearance (I have more reason than most to know this).

None of us really know the facts in the case yet, so we will have to see what comes out in court.

Onesleeptillwembley Fri 30-Aug-13 13:35:25

georgedawes you are spot on. Strangely, that's why, although I hadn't heard anything 'Pervy' (although he was a bit of a player) about Stuart Hall I, and many others were completely unsurprised by the revelations as he is one of the most arrogant people around. Disgusting creature, repulsive family.

noddyholder Fri 30-Aug-13 13:40:59

I am glad if thats the word sad that there are cases of indecency as recent as last year. There seems to be a common theme of 'Oh what where we like back in the olden days' wrt these men and the abuses they committed. This proves that it was not a sign of the times as a lot of media reporting would try to push us to believe but that it is a attributable to the person and not the decade

georgedawes Fri 30-Aug-13 13:45:01

What I'm about to say is a general comment not about RH

The thing is, it is so hard to know from one prosecution whether it is a pattern of offending or a one off. Victims of sexual assault often (very often) do not report what happened to the police and the CPS rarely prosecute, usually because of a (perceived) lack of evidence/chance of conviction. The facts are that many (most?) sex offenders will have a long history of offending and if convicted it is likely to be the tip of a very large iceberg.

I also wanted to say to all the people who are shocked because people like RH seem nice - (and again this is a general observation, I am not implying guilt) - this is what most sex offenders are like. They look just like any 'normal' member of society and the sooner we realise this the sooner we will stop disbelieving and blaming victims.

boschy Fri 30-Aug-13 15:50:38

I think the thing is, if you are of a certain age, you were brought up with these people - on the telly while you were safely eating a chocolate biscuit, nice blokes doing entertaining things (I personally except JS from this).

So its as if the picture you saw 'may' not have been real (ie if they have/have not been convicted) and that causes you to question what you believed in as a child. Which in turn asks you to question everything else you may have seen/been subjected to as a teen/young adult, if that makes sense?

I used to love RH when I was a little girl, loved him later on AH. so if he is guilty, that puts my previous experiences and understanding in question to me.

However, that makes no apology for the 'oh they just took advantage of what was available' or 'it was different then' or 'we always knew he was a groper' brigade. Of which my DM is a prime example - NSIT anyone??

I think back in the day it was just easier for sleazy people to take advantage of young girls/boys; no one believed them. Now we believe them more, but we still have difficulty in believing that this or that trusted figure (TV personality, celeb, swimming instructor etc) could actually have been the sleazy one.

georgedawes Fri 30-Aug-13 16:00:39

I understand that boschy, but all that does is make me feel even more sorry for victims of men like these. How must they feel knowing what happened to them, yet all the world thinks they're heroes?

My head can't comprehend what that must feel like.

boschy Fri 30-Aug-13 16:05:20

absolutely georgedawes, and you are right - I was posting from the point of view of the happy, priviliged child I guess. I cant imagine what it must be like to have been abused by the person 'everyone' thought was a diamond... or indeed by anyone else. (dealt with a few sleazebags in my teens/early 20s, but that's different - I was equipped to deal with them).

so I apologise if I seemed to be minimising the effects on those affected, I really really wasnt, and if you (generic) have been abused by anyone, then I BELIEVE YOU.

boschy Fri 30-Aug-13 16:08:05

NSIT= Not Safe In Taxis.

according to my DM, now aged 83, this is what you used to tell your friends about those who would take it too far. I cannot talk to her about JS etc, even when I say "but you have a 14 y old GD, imagine if she met one her favourite boy band members and went backstage..." she just thinks it was down to the girls to avoid the baddies.

no fucking idea!

georgedawes Fri 30-Aug-13 16:08:56

I do understand, I wasn't having a go - just thought it was a point worth making because normally these issues are so hidden, whether it's because of shame or feeling people won't be believed etc.

Someone close to me was raped by a upstanding, charming, good looking etc man. It went to court and he was found not guilty, so in the eyes of the law it didn't happen. I have so much respect for the people who have had the courage to report cases of historical abuse, I'm afraid I wouldn't.

boschy Fri 30-Aug-13 16:11:32

george, I think we are on the same page. I hope your friend is ok. I think I might have the courage to report, but that is only because I am a fucking stroppy mare! and if I knew anyone in that situation, then I would give them every support I possibly could, even if that menat they didnt report, which is contentious in itself.

georgedawes Fri 30-Aug-13 16:15:15

I don't want to derail the thread, but until you've seen what the criminal justice system does to rape victims in court then it's easy to say you'd report an assault. I used to say that too sad And in any case, it is up to the CPS to decide whether or not to prosecute - the majority of 'allegations' are not taken to court, so either most women are making these up or a lot of men are getting away with it.

Anyway, I find this too upsetting to talk about so sorry but might have to step away from the thread.

boschy Fri 30-Aug-13 16:17:56

sorry george I really didnt mean to upset you. take care xxx

boschy Fri 30-Aug-13 16:22:16

george was going to PM you, but am too thick to work out how and have to go out in a minute. again, my really sincere apologies, I wouldnt upset anyone for the world if I could avoid it. please pm me if you would like me to apologise again xxx

georgedawes Fri 30-Aug-13 16:29:32

You don't need to apologise, really! I'm not the victim but I suppose it is a defence thing not wanting to talk about it. It has affected me a lot and it didn't even happen to me. I just wanted to make the case that we need to think about victims more, and start realising that the men that do these sorts of things come from all walks of life, some are "good guys", that's one of the reasons they are able to get away with it.

Rooners Fri 30-Aug-13 18:01:05

I'm not going to apologise for what I sad as it was heartfelt and genuine and not an attempt to excuse him.

Can people not distinguish between excusing someone, ie making excuses for them, and WANTING TO BE ABLE, legitimately, to find a way to continue to see them in the same light as ever?

Wanting it to be a mistake as opposed to stating that it is definitely a mistake and you will never, ever believe it?

If someone told you that maybe your closest friend, or you know, someone you really rate, is actually a closet paedophile - would you not be saying 'really? I can't believe it...surely there may have been some mistake? Could it be an error, could it be such and such..?'

There's a major difference there. I am ready and willing to believe whatever the court decides. I am not going to stand between a sex offender and just retribution.

However I retain the right to be shocked, to be saddened and to be looking at ways in which I might be able to maintain my previous opinion of the person. This is completely normal and that's why so many of us are doing it.

If he is found to have done these things I shall be as horrified and disgusted as anyone. I'm not going to be sitting here saying 'Oh poor bloke, he can't have meant it, maybe he was just misguided'. I will be feeling sorry for the people it happened to.

But initially on hearing news that seems anachronistic at the very least it is normal to want to find a way around it, IF THERE IS one.

I hope that helps a bit.

Rooners Fri 30-Aug-13 18:04:15

In fact I am already sympathising with any possible victims without having the slightest clue what really went on.

There were very few people trying against the odds/popular opinion to maintain their existing impression on the JS threads...simply because a lot of people already couldn't stand the bloke. It didn't seem out of place.

georgedawes Fri 30-Aug-13 18:25:36

Whether you like it or not Rooners, that's one of the reasons so many sex offenders are found not guilty in court. The jury is full of people who think "someone like that wouldn't do that, there must be something else going on" and it only takes a 'good' defence lawyer to pour scorn on the victim therefore playing straight into the doubts already there in the jury's mind. Your view is certainly prevalent, no doubt about it.

I'm out of here anyway, hiding the thread now.

Rooners Fri 30-Aug-13 18:26:47

Before you go I hope you saw my draining rack recommendation on the worktop thread.

Rooners Fri 30-Aug-13 18:29:37

My view on what btw?

Rooners Fri 30-Aug-13 18:30:16

Because I don't have a view on whether or not he is guilty.

georgedawes Fri 30-Aug-13 21:06:18

However I retain the right to be shocked, to be saddened and to be looking at ways in which I might be able to maintain my previous opinion of the person. This is completely normal and that's why so many of us are doing it.

^Can people not distinguish between excusing someone, ie making excuses for them, and WANTING TO BE ABLE, legitimately, to find a way to continue to see them in the same light as ever?

Wanting it to be a mistake as opposed to stating that it is definitely a mistake and you will never, ever believe it?

If someone told you that maybe your closest friend, or you know, someone you really rate, is actually a closet paedophile - would you not be saying 'really? I can't believe it...surely there may have been some mistake? Could it be an error, could it be such and such..?'^

He's a man you've seen on the telly, not your closest friend.

The last para in particular is how defence barristers portray men accused of sexual assault in court. A fine, upstanding member of the community; everyman. And people in the jury are made up of people like you and others on this thread, who want to be believe there has been some mistake or an error, or whatever excuse you can think of. It's easy to see why the conviction rate is so low isn't it?

AnyFucker Fri 30-Aug-13 21:17:01

Rooners you should take heed of what GD is saying

Your views on this thread are pedestrian at best and abuse-apologist at worst

Your line of reasoning is why so many abusive individuals slip through the net, and so many victims do not get believed

Thankfully, you are not currently on a peer-judged jury

I say this with kindness and not to upset you. You and I have chatted and I have no beef with you at all. But please, have a really good think about the message behind your careless words. Yes, they are echoed all up and down this country. It doesn't make them right though.

AnyFucker Fri 30-Aug-13 21:18:01

george I hope you are ok. You are not on your own x

DevastatedD0G Fri 30-Aug-13 21:26:36

Really don't know why my post was deleted. All I said was that people annoy me going on about how sad they are. Not about the (alleged) victim but about the fact they liked the suspect. Makes me bloody cross.

Pan Fri 30-Aug-13 22:46:42

Whoa! It isn't a competition here! Lots of people are at varying stages of understanding the implications of what's actually going on around them - jumping on people, calling them 'apologists', is just unnecessary imo. It's quite legitimate for posters to express quite a shock at the turn of events, and do a bit of struggling without the associated condemnations of others as not being quite 'up to speed'.

georgedawes Fri 30-Aug-13 22:50:09

Thanks AF. I shouldn't get so upset (and no one individual on this thread has particularly offended/upset me), I just find the whole attitude to sex offences in this country depressing as hell. I have other reasons I can't go into, but suffice to say my (slightly immature) way of coping is to shut off from it all. This kind of view is really, really common..a lot of my friends and family feel the same. I just wish it would change, how on earth can the conviction rate for these kind of offences ever change?

The problem lies as much with society as it does with the people who commit these crimes. We are the ones who find them not guilty, who doubt, who victim blame, who minimise, who look for reasons why.

AnyFucker Fri 30-Aug-13 22:52:28

Pan as you know, when attitudes go unchallenged, then nothing will change

I've done my own fair share of being pulled "up to speed" and very glad of it I was (although it stung a bit at the time)

Don't try to make me out the Bad Guy here, we all know who the Bad Guys are

georgedawes Fri 30-Aug-13 22:52:33

Suggesting it was because he was senile, obscene drawings, having a midlife crisis and comparing it to finding out your best friend has been accused of similar isn't a great reaction, whichever way you want to look at it.

Pan Fri 30-Aug-13 22:59:39

no gd all of that aren't optimal reactions, of course. But fairly understandable in the circs of how such things are reacted to, and people learn from discourse. It's the jabby fingers style of discourse over matters that we are continuously learning about that's a bit hmm.

Onesleeptillwembley Fri 30-Aug-13 23:00:06

georgedaws You shutting yourself off is not immature. It's a perfectly understandable protective mechanism. You do whatever's right for you.

georgedawes Fri 30-Aug-13 23:05:00

I don't think they're understandable at all. I can't think of any situation where my first thought about hearing someone had been charged with a sexual offence against a child was that they were senile, or having a mid-life crisis.

Thanks onesleep.

georgedawes Fri 30-Aug-13 23:09:35

But I suppose they're common views, if not one I understand.

Pan Fri 30-Aug-13 23:14:07

I think they are understandable, and widely reflected. I was referring to cases generally. And maybe your first thought wasn't those things, so good for you. So where does that take us?
fwiw I think RH being charged will be a further watershed in the public consciousness of understanding about who exactly are potential offenders. But it's a bit of a journey.

AnyFucker Fri 30-Aug-13 23:14:35

they are the kneejerk reactions, george

the ones that causes less visceral discomfort for the reader

the ones where you don't have to think you can just hide behind platitudes and get on with your life where nothing bad like this could ever happen to your loved ones

it is understandable actaully, victim-blaming is akin to dummy sucking IMO, it is a comfort response

it doesn't make it right though, and once I stopped doing it life got harder and thank goodness for that

georgedawes Fri 30-Aug-13 23:16:37

"just world" shit isn't it

good for me indeed

Pan Fri 30-Aug-13 23:18:51

iirc no-one on this thread has referred to victim-blaming - that issue is quite separate to the sense of shock being expressed over RH being charged.

AnyFucker Fri 30-Aug-13 23:20:06

if you excuse/ apologise for the offender, then what are you left with ?

Pan Fri 30-Aug-13 23:23:42

I don;t think anyone has done those thingsAF - we've had some water-thin explanations - but again none of those have targeted the alleged victims.

AnyFucker Fri 30-Aug-13 23:27:09

If you excuse the offender then it follows there is no victim

throw all of the cases out of court then

Pan Fri 30-Aug-13 23:39:44

No AF - that's just fairly bollocks wrong. Have you not read anything I've posted over the years?smile
Excuse and explain have v different weights and implications.

These processes (such as RH) are highly educative, and yay for that. The incidence of 'historic' allegations have mushromed over the last year. And RHs charging should accelerate that, one hopes.

CaptainKirksNipples Fri 30-Aug-13 23:52:34

Someone near me was found guilty of making images, he cut and paste a little girls face he knew onto a downloaded picture of child abuse. I doubt he is in trouble for drawing dodgy cartoons!!

Tortington Fri 30-Aug-13 23:55:23

dya know what, i can see the seedy fucks that constitute the TV personalities of my youth , but rolph being charged has been a shock

AnyFucker Fri 30-Aug-13 23:55:39

yes, Pan, it feels like I have been reading you for years wink

I agree with you some of the time. On this, I do not.

out of interest, do you accept "mid life crisis" as either an excuse or an explanation for allegedly abusing a child, whatever your own personal definitions of those may be?

Pan Sat 31-Aug-13 00:12:59

yeah me too AF. Often you talk sense, and then sometimes....grin

Briefly? Excuse is to shift blame, explain is to accept blame and 'reason' it out. No-one here has 'excused' RH, afaik.

AnyFucker Sat 31-Aug-13 00:13:37

you didn't answer my question, pan

Pan Sat 31-Aug-13 00:16:48

other things on AF <notes impatient and demanding temperament>

AnyFucker Sat 31-Aug-13 00:19:07

it was a straightforward question and you dodged it

I shall even use your vernacular if you like

do you think "midlife crisis" or a "touch of dementia" is a "reason" for allegedly abusing a child ?

I can't word it any other way without becoming completely unintelligible

Pan Sat 31-Aug-13 00:37:29

I didn't dodge it AF, don't be silly. And it's 'diction', not a choice of vernacular.
RH may well offer them as part of an explanation, as some posters have here. But as I have said, but you seem to be not wishing to read, no-one is victim-blaming. You've made that one up yourself.

AnyFucker Sat 31-Aug-13 00:43:03

You didn't quite get me, Pan

I used the word "vernacular" to highlight the fact you are speaking a different language to me. The Oxford dictionary is your friend here.

MLC or a touch of dementia is a proposed "explanation" for alleged child abuse. I get it now.

And it's still wrong.

Pan Sat 31-Aug-13 00:48:13

oh whatever AF - it's the same language, pretty straight forward stuff. It just seems you don't like your view to be analysed over this stuff.

AnyFucker Sat 31-Aug-13 00:50:54

Good night Pan smile

Pan Sat 31-Aug-13 00:51:51

and to

DebbieM1 Tue 03-Sep-13 16:31:24

Yep, bit gutted about this. A bit of a legend to so many of us. Trying to stay hopeful, he's been charged so far - not found guilty. At the mo he's still vehemently denying it. Not holding my breath though, they must have good evidence.

josywells Mon 23-Dec-13 08:09:42

I have been watching Rolf Harris for 35 years have admired him for all he has achieved. I feel violated and cheated that all this time I have been admiring such a person. This has affected me quite badly, I worry that I don't have a good judge of a persons character. In fact if he is found guilty....... it is going to take me a very long time to get over this.

deanrose1973 Mon 23-Dec-13 16:13:11

You people are sick in the head.

There have been thousands of INNOCENT people charged with all sorts of crimes from STEALING to MURDER do you think the prosecution had good reason to bring charges? YES

The trial will prove whether Mr Harris is INNOCENT or GUILTY just because there is a case to answer doesn't mean Harris has committed the crimes he has been accused of.

People like the ones above who point fingers should be put on trial you are NASTY pieces of work and don't deserve the freedoms you seem to flaunt and dismiss on daily basis.

I hope Mr Harris is innocent but the jury and judge will tell us the TRUTH

biryani Mon 23-Dec-13 20:57:08

deanrose steady on!

You're right, though. Innocent till proven guilty.

SoleSource Wed 15-Jan-14 19:54:03

I just want the truth.

normalishdude Mon 30-Jun-14 15:51:45


Animation Mon 30-Jun-14 16:13:05

Yes Deanrose - what was all that about. Me think you protest too much hmm

Anyway - he's guilty ...

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