The Crimes

It’s believed that Savile started abusing in 1955.
For the next fifty years, Savile sexually assaulted and raped children and teenagers and even the elderly – of both sexes – with little fear of exposure. As revealed in the NHS investigations published in June 2014, his youngest victim was five: His eldest was seventy five.

“Anything that moved seemed to be a potential victim for Savile.”
Peter Saunders Chief Executive,National Association for People Abused in Childhood

And the NHS investigations found he was even suspected of interfering with corpses.

Those closest to him soon became aware of Savile’s sexual side. When his unofficial minder in the 1950s, Dennis Lemmon, asked a colleague why Savile was in a bad mood, he was told it was because of a court case to do with ‘messing about with girls’. When he later asked how the case had ended, Dennis was told it had ended like the last one:

“He paid them off.”

Savile, by paying off the accuser’s family, had escaped justice.

“What’s amazing is how brazen he was, how public he was even then...he’s just an individual who probably felt that he was fairly untouchable.”
Miles Goslett, Journalist

His early escapes from public censure encouraged Savile to believe he was untouchable.
After that, nowhere was safe.
Savile abused victims in his dressing rooms, his caravan and later his Rolls Royce.
Nowhere was sacrosanct.  In 1962, he started sexually assaulting patients in Leeds Infirmary.
A 10-year-old boy was sexually assaulted on a trolley while he waited for an x-ray on his broken arm
Many were abused in their beds as they recovered from surgery.
One girl, ‘Jane’ was first brought sweets and a magazine by Savile. He then stuck his tongue in her mouth as he touched her.
When she told nurses, they laughed. 

In 1968, Guy Marsden, Savile’s 15-year-old nephew, travelled from Leeds to London with three friends. They were looking for adventure. At London’s Euston Station, they were approached by two men. They invited them to their flat. And when later Savile arrived, Guy thought his family had tracked him down. But he later found out from the police, that his his uncle was simply supplying and plying his paedophile ways in a network of children:

“...most decent people find it incomprehensible that these sort of organisations...exist, but no less incomprehensible than why would anybody abuse a child. The fact that people come together to do it seems in a way somewhat more scary - because very often we’re talking about people...from the upper echelons of society.”
Peter Saunders Chief Executive National Association for People Abused in Childhood’

Guy believes that the fact he survived these ‘parties’ unscathed was only because of his familial connection to Savile. For unlike many paedophiles, Savile didn’t need to abuse those in his family network. He had many, many opportunities elsewhere.

INDUSTRIAL SCALE ABUSE

According to the NSCPCC, when Savile was at the height of his fame, during the 1970s, so was his offending.

“...he hid his darkness in the light”
Paul Connew, Former Editor, ‘Sunday Mirror’

Savile’s career at the BBC gave him more and easier access to the young. When his behaviour caused concern, the few who thought of whistle-blowing were informally told not to risk the career of such a star presenter, or their own, by pursuing the matter.

The BBC shows, ‘Jim’ll Fix It’ and ‘Top of the Pops’ brought a revolving door of fresh teenage and often unchaperoned girls to Savile.

And if Savile wanted to spend longer with his victims, that could be arranged too.
 

NEXT: THE INVESTIGATION