Watchdog says Jimmy Savile could have been caught in 2008 but Sussex police mishandled victim’s abuse complaint

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Detectives missed a key opportunity to catch Jimmy Savile in 2008 when they mishandled a woman’s complaint against the prolific paedophile, a report has found.

In a damning report, the Independent Police Complaints Commission said Sussex Police failed to follow all lines of inquiry after an alleged victim claimed she had been sexually assaulted by the entertainer in a caravan in Worthing.

The woman, who said she was attacked in 1970, had bravely come forward in 2008 to make a complaint to police about the historical offence.

But the force sent two male detectives to interview her – instead of at least one trained female officer – and failed to follow all lines of inquiry, the report found.

The entertainer, who is believed to have abused more than 1,000 victims, died three years later.