On 11th February 2014 Fred Talbot, best known as the weatherman on ‘This Morning’ appeared in Manchester Magistrates’ Court accused of “nine offences of indecent assault and one serious sexual assault against five alleged victims“. These are dated between 1968 and 1983 when Mr Talbot was a schoolteacher.
That is from the BBC news report. We know what indecent assault is (and if you want more information see our factsheet on historic sexual offences) but don’t know what a ‘serious sexual assault’ is. There is currently an offence of sexual assault, but this was only created in the Sexual Offences Act 2003. It may be this is from a press release because the Manchester Evening News used the same terminology, but is not great reporting. It may be that it refers to an offence of indecency with a child or something similar. Time will tell, but we expect more of the BBC.
The case was sent to the Crown Court. As is usual, given that the case is ongoing, we will not be saying much more about it until the case has been completed,