Woman 'shaken up' after DLT 'grope'

This Is Local London: DJ Dave Lee Travis is accused of a series of indecent assaults and one sexual assault DJ Dave Lee Travis is accused of a series of indecent assaults and one sexual assault

A former stage hand who was allegedly groped by veteran DJ Dave Lee Travis while he was appearing in a pantomime has told a court her ordeal ended when they were interrupted by children's entertainers the Chuckle Brothers.

Former Radio 1 presenter Travis, now 68, was playing "evil uncle" Abanazar in Aladdin, which also featured Chuckle Brothers, Barry and Paul Elliott, London's Southwark Crown Court heard.

The woman, who cannot be identified for legal reasons, said she did not report what happened as she thought she could lose her job.

Giving evidence from behind a screen, the woman said she had gone into Travis's dressing room, as she had often done before, when he assaulted her without warning.

She told jurors: "I was about to go and he was suddenly behind me.

"He's a big chap and he engulfed me and he had his hand on the door above me.

"He put his other hand down the front of my jogging bottoms.

"He was touching me from top to bottom."

Asked by prosecutor Miranda Moore QC where his hand went, the woman said: "I believe it was over my genitalia. I don't think it went inside my pants."

The witness said that getting out of the door became her "complete focus" as she struggled to escape.

She went on: "It felt like a long time but I think it was only a matter of moments before I managed to get the door open.

"He was pushing it over the top of my head. He was a lot stronger than I am."

She said that after opening the door slightly: "I heard someone say 'alright Dave', at which point he released me."

The woman said she was then aware the voice belonged to one of the Chuckle Brothers who were walking along the corridor towards the dressing room.

The woman, who was aged 21 at the time of the alleged incident in the early 1990s, said she rushed away and told a supervisor about what had happened.

"I was really obviously shaken up. Confused and scared and just in a bit of a state really."

She said her colleague agreed that she would not have to go into Travis's dressing room again for the rest of the show's run and they discussed whether to take the issue further.

She told jurors: "We decided that because it was my first job in theatre it wouldn't be me who was going to be believed.

"I think I felt that even if someone believed me, which I didn't, it still wouldn't be me that kept my job."

The theatre later decided that female workers should not be left alone with Travis during the show's run, the court heard.

The former BBC presenter, who is on trial under his real name, David Patrick Griffin, denies 13 indecent assaults and one sexual assault, dating back to 1976 and the height of his fame.

Dressed in a grey woollen blazer and maroon shirt and tie, he listened to the proceedings from the dock with the aid of headphones.

The woman's colleague also gave evidence and told jurors that Travis had a reputation.

"There was a general feeling that, if avoidable, female members of the cast shouldn't be left alone in his company," the man said.

"It wasn't adopted as an official policy. It was known throughout the company."

Another woman told the court she had gone though "40 years of hell" after allegedly being assaulted by Travis when she was a 19-year-old deputy carnival princess.

The witness said the DJ put his hand up her skirt and touched her breast while they were alone at the opening of a hospital radio station in 1973.

She said Travis had a "haunting look" on his face as he touched her and she felt "frightened" and "ashamed" so avoided watching the former Top Of The Pops presenter on the TV again.

Breaking down in tears, she said her ordeal had an effect on her love life with her late husband, who would never know why.

"When he put his arms around me, I'd freeze," she said.

The woman, who said she was brought up a strict Catholic, said the incident left her too scared to go out on her own.

She said of Travis: "He screwed a lot of my life up."

The woman, who gave evidence from behind a screen, told jurors she was being escorted through the hospital by Travis when he put his arm around her waist, which she did not feel comfortable with.

She said she shoved it away but "didn't dare say anything".

The witness, who said she was wearing a long wraparound skirt, told jurors they then walked down a dark, deserted corridor.

"He then put his hand on my thigh and in my skirt and touched my inner thigh and held it there quite firmly," she said.

"I didn't say a word, I was too frightened. He put his hand around my waist again and I think I went quite stiff and he put his hand up towards my boob."

She added that the fact that nobody else was around was "terrifying", and although Travis did not say anything either, he had a "nasty" look on his face.

A "haunting look, it was a weird look," she added.

The woman said that afterwards she tried to "bury it inside" but everything came back when she saw news coverage of Travis's arrest.

"I just went mental indoors. I actually wanted to punch the television," she said.

Prosecutor Miranda Moore QC told jurors that the woman's evidence did not relate to any specific charge against Travis.

The woman's partner also took to the witness box and told the court she "cries her heart out" whenever Travis is mentioned.

The trial was adjourned until tomorrow.

click2find

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree