Tasked with the soul-crushing burden of overseeing the trial of now former Lostprophets vocalist Ian Watkins, the presiding Judge Eleri Rees has stated that jurors involved with the case may need professional counselling on account of the extreme nature of the evidence presented to them.
In a situation which is awkward even just to write about, Watkins is facing 24 different sex offense charges, some involving a child, after being arrested in December last year.
Of the 24 charges, Watkins faces 2 counts of raping an infant child – said to be as young as one – which allegedly took place circa April 2012. He also faces allegations of aiding and abetting another to sexually assault an infant child, said to have taken place between August and October of that same year. Watkins will also be held accountable for bestiality material police have uncovered.
On account of the evidence that the jury is about to be exposed to, Judge Rees suggests the intervention of counsellors to mitigate the psychological damage the extreme material could cause. “We need to consider what material the jury will be shown. There is the possibility that some jury members, having completed the trial may need counseling,” he said.
Watkins appeared in court Monday, 14th October via video link alongside his two co-accused, one of whom, a 20-year-old woman, has already pleaded guilty to inappropriately touching a minor and distributing child pornography.
As is standard procedure, the jury will be carefully selected to ensure none of Watkins peers are aware of his profile in the music world. The trial will commence on Tuesday, 12th November with all 3 accused remaining in custody until then.
Under the weight of the situation, Lostprophets recently announced they will no longer be continuing as a band.
(Via The PRP)