EastEnders' Ruby Allen (Louisa Lytton) has been arrested on suspicion of sexual assault. The events manager is taking two men to court charged with raping her last year, but the shock twist on Monday 25 February that she is now being accused of the crime herself could jeopardise her efforts to bring her attackers to justice.
Police arrived at a packed Walford East restaurant where Ruby was staging a party for new managers Iqra and Habiba Ahmed. Believing the cops had come to discuss her ongoing case, a caught-off-guard Ruby reeled in shock as she was arrested following a sexual assault charge being brought against her.
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Under interrogation down at the station, officers revealed a former employee of Ruby's, Blake Turner, had accused her of sexually assaulting him.
Defiantly denying the claim, flabbergasted Ruby was allowed to leave pending further inquiries as best mate Stacey Fowler came to collect her. Stace was also stunned at Ruby's arrest, considering the ordeal she herself went through, and questioned what was going on.
It has taken months for brave Rube to face the world again, with the Walford East party meant to signify her taking control of her life - only for the shock twist of the assault allegation to knock her confidence back down. But Ms Allen was in fighting mood as she vowed to Stace she fight the claim and wouldn't let it stop her own case.
"I'm sick of being pushed around by everyone - I'm not sitting back any more," she angrily told her mate. "I'm going to fight fire with fire…"
Will Ruby seek revenge?
Last October, a drunken night out at E20 night club ended in horror when Ruby went home with a guy called Ross Swinden and slept with him - then passed out and woke up with his friend Matt Clarkson on top of her. The fact she did not consent to sleeping with Matt eventually led to Ruby bringing rape charges against both Matt and Ross, who did nothing to stop his friend taking advantage of Ruby.
The storyline sparked a debate on and off screen on the issue of sexual consent, with episodes devoted to the plot winning praise from audiences and critics as the soap explored the topic.
Are Matt and Ross or their legal team somehow behind this accusation against Ruby to discredit her claims against them? Will viewers get to meet the mysterious Blake Turner? What does this mean for Ruby's upcoming trial? And what exactly did she mean when she threatened to 'fight fire with fire?' - is she set to turn vigilante?
New producer Kate Oates has teased the plot will take a surprising twist as Ruby remembers her gangster roots. "Don’t forget Ruby is Johnny Allen’s daughter, so that will offer a different kind of drama as she deals with what happened to her. I'm looking forward to exploring that…"
Later this week, Ruby pushes boyfriend Jay away and he unwittingly upsets her, making the situation worse. And on Friday 28 February, Ruby receives another visit from the police - but is it about her own case, or the case building against her?
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