Emmerdale and Hollyoaks
ilver-tongued Pierce Harris can talk his way out of virtually anything… but does that include a rape conviction?
This week, he’s on trial for attacking Rhona on their wedding day, but while she’s desperate to see him punished, she isn’t confident that justice will be served.
As the traumatised vet leans on Paddy, her estranged husband has Martha for support. But things soon turn sour between mother and son. Pierce blames her for his ‘predicament’ and turns violent.
‘He thinks she was a terrible drunkard and that she ran off with other men,’ reveals Jonathan Wrather, who plays Pierce. ‘But it’s just not true – he has skewed everything in his mind.’
Rhona’s relieved when she finds out that the dreaded sex tape won’t be used as evidence, and then feels reassured when her questioning by the prosecution goes well.
But, under cross-examination by the defence, she is torn apart.
‘The defence lawyer annihilates her,’ reveals actress Zoe Henry, who plays Rhona. ‘It soon becomes quite clear that she is losing it.’
Pierce then gives an Oscarwinning performance as the ‘wrongly accused’ husband, and just when it looks like things can’t get any worse, Marlon and Vanessa take the witness stand.
‘The defence team raises the subject of how Marlon’s now ex, Carly, used to go jogging with Pierce,’ explains Zoe. ‘The lawyer asks him why he let his girlfriend go running in the woods with a man he thought was overbearing. And when Vanessa’s in the dock, she says that Pierce told her he raped Rhona, which he didn’t. So that undermines the whole case.’
Away from the courtroom, Rhona catches sight of her evil ex. She follows him into a side room and urges him to confess. ‘At that point, she believes he is going to get off,’ says Zoe, ‘and she thinks, “I just want him to say he did it. If that is all I am going to get from this awful experience, then I’ll take it.” ’
Pierce finally cracks and acknowledges his crime to her
– but can he bring himself to do the same in front of judge and jury?
It’s judgment day for the twisted solicitor – will he get away with raping Rhona, or will he do the right thing?
Crime and punishment: Pierce is in the dock at last
On the stand: Vanessa lies under oath Under fire: Rhona is cross-examined