Latitude boss Melvin Benn ‘distraught’ over reported rape at festival

Organiser speaks after second sex attack reported

Latitude organiser Melvin Benn has said he is “distraught” after a second rape was reported at the Suffolk festival.

Speaking at a press conference on the final day of the festival (July 18), Benn said he was working closely with police to find the men responsible for the first attack – though a 19 year-old man has already been arrested in connection with the second incident.

However, Benn stressed that Latitude would continue as normal, and remained an “incredibly safe” environment.

“This is a friendly and supportive festival, probably safer than an awful lot of city centres on a Friday or Saturday night,” he said.

Benn continued: “People are obviously entitled to be nervous. But these things, as awful as they are, are outside anyone’s control. Whether it’s at a festival or in a village or high street, there are people around who – either determinedly or opportunistically – will do such a thing.”

Police are still appealing for information regarding the first rape, which took place around 10pm (BST) on Thursday night (July 15), in the campsite.

The second attack, which also took place in the campsite, occurred on Friday night (July 16). In that instant the assailant was apparently known to the victim, leading to the police making a swift arrest.

Anyone with information is asked to call the Suffolk Constabulary on 01473 613500.