Coronation Street’s Amy Barlow was left devastated on Friday’s episode when her rape case against Aaron Sandford was dropped by police due to a lack of evidence.
The series was tackling the issue of non-consensual sex in the rough storyline that saw Amy pass out after drinking too much.
Undaunted, Amy reports the crime, but is upset after being told there is not enough evidence to pursue the case, with the charges against Aaron being dropped.
However, her mother, Tracy Barlow, refused to let it drop and insisted that justice be done for her daughter, and they printed flyers about how the police were “decriminalizing rape”.
Amy (Elle Mulvaney) is quick to object to her mother’s plan, saying it was too difficult to deal with without others finding out what happened to her.
Upset: Coronation Street’s Amy Barlow was devastated in Friday’s episode when police dropped her rape case against Aaron Sandford due to lack of evidence
The plan: Still, her mother, Tracy Barlow, refused to let it drop and insisted on getting justice for her daughter, printing fliers about how the police could “decriminalize rape”
Despite her protests, the episode comes to a dramatic conclusion when Tracy (Kate Ford) is seen angrily printing out flyers in an attempt to get justice for Amy.
The last twist in the emotional storyline is Tracy telling Steve McDonald (Simon Gregson) that she saw Aaron released by the police after his arrest.
Aaron Aaron (James Craven) is then seen protesting his innocence to mother figure Abi Franklin (Sally Carman).
He said: I did not do it, O father, swear by it!
But my father asked him: Did you force her to have sex?
To which he insisted: “No, I didn’t.”
When he shared his concerns about what people might think, Dad told him, “Just tell people what you told me, you’re innocent.”
Summer Spellman (Harriet Bibby), who is dating Aaron, is then seen confronting Amy about what happened.
Grumpy Summer: “You’re supposed to be my boyfriend.” Amy you slept with my boyfriend!
Objections: Amy (Elle Mulvaney) is quick to object to her mother’s plan, saying it was too difficult to deal with without others finding out what happened to her.
Plot: Despite her protests, the episode comes to a dramatic conclusion when Tracy (Kate Ford) is still seen angrily printing out flyers in an effort to get justice for Amy.
But Amy emotionally admitted: He raped me, okay? He raped me.
Samar said, “You’re lying.” “You’re only saying that because you want to blame him.”
But Amy insisted: “I swear I’m telling the truth, I never consented to sex.” I wouldn’t lie about something like that, and you know that.
As she walked away, her friend assured her, “I believe you.” I’m very sorry.
Worried parents Tracy and Steve are then seen confronting Aaron, who still insists he told “the truth” when protesting his innocence.
Tracy is furious: ‘You call my daughter a liar?’ You want that uncomfortable business to go away. We want justice for the rape of my daughter! “
And Steve added, “You know, when they hit you, I hope you rot in there.”
Amy was then taken through another round of police questioning, when they asked her about the messages and pictures on her phone, with Amy saying they were telling she was lying.
A police officer then visits Amy’s home and tells the family that there is not enough evidence to move the case forward, because it was Amy’s word against Aaron.
‘So that’s it?’ said an upset Steve, ‘just a small talk and then whatever he’s done with it gets swept under the rug.’
“You’re basically calling her a liar,” Tracy asked.
“I shouldn’t have bothered to say anything,” said a distressed Amy. what is the point? I should have known they would never believe me.
Release: The latest twist in the emotional story is that Tracy tells Steve McDonald (Simon Gregson) that she saw Aaron released by the police after his arrest
Colleagues: Summer Spellman (Harriet Bibby), who is dating Aaron, is seen confronting Amy about what happened, but Amy reveals that she was raped
Interrogated: Amy was then taken in for police questioning, when they asked her about the messages and photos on her phone Amy said they were telling she was lying
But Tracy assures her: “You were absolutely right, and did the right thing by reporting it.”
Aaron then confronts Summer, who says she believed Amy and was not convinced by Aaron’s protests that he was “innocent” because the case had been dropped.
Aaron then packed his bags and was seen telling Abi that he intended to leave, but she convinced him to stay after asking him again if he was innocent.
An angry Tracy is then seen creating posts on her computer about how the police are handling the rape accusations, despite Steve’s protests that Amy doesn’t want her.
Revealing her plan, she said, “I’m designing a flyer, I’m going to put it out there. It says the police are decriminalizing rape.”
But Steve insisted: “You can’t do that, Amy said she didn’t want anyone to know. When you glue them all together, they won’t put two and two together.
He added, “This isn’t about you, this is about what Amy wants.”
But Tracy said, “She deserves our support to know she’s in our corner.”
When Amy entered the room and learned of her mother’s plot, Amy expressed her disapproval and said she wanted to remain anonymous.
She said, “You’re kidding me!” You can’t do that, you start going handing out flyers, and people will start asking questions. It’s so bad that I have to deal with this, without people whispering.
However, the episode comes to a dramatic conclusion as Tracy is seen disregarding her daughter’s concerns when she prints out the flyers and goes ahead with her plan.
In the scenes to come, viewers will see the different reactions and understandings of the non-consensual sexual activity as both teens grapple with what happened that night.
Tough blow: Amy is then told by a police officer that there isn’t enough evidence to move the case forward, because it was her word against Aaron.
Story line: The soap opera was dealing with the issue of non-consensual sex in the rough storyline which saw Amy pass out after too much drinking (Aaron pictured)
It is hoped that the story line will open up conversations between families and friends about issues surrounding sexuality among young people, including consent, awareness, respect, and education.
The Coronation Street researchers worked alongside the Schools Consent Project, a charity founded in early 2015 that sends legally trained volunteers to schools to give workshops on the legal definition of sexual consent.
The free national Rape Crisis helpline is available on 0808 802 9999 (12-2.30pm and 7-9.30pm every day of the year).
Coronation Street airs Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays at 8pm on ITV1 and ITVX.