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Caroline Flack quits as Love Island host after assault charge
17 December 2019, 10:19
Caroline Flack has quit as the host of Love Island after she was charged with assault.
She was arrested after allegedly having a row with her boyfriend Lewis Burton at their north London home on Thursday.
The 40-year-old began hosting the show in June 2015, and has also hosted spin-off Love Island: Aftersun since 2017.
In an Instagram story, she wrote: "There have been a significant number of media reports and allegations in regards to my personal life.
"While matters were not as have been reported, I am committed to cooperating with the appropriate authorities and I can’t comment further on these matters until the legal process is over.
"However, Love Island has been my world for the last five years, it's the best show on telly.
"In order to not detract attention from the upcoming series I feel the best thing I can do is to stand down for Series 6.
"I want to wish the incredible team working on the show a fantastic series in Cape Town."
Laura Whitmore is the favourite to replace Flack on the ITV hit series, with odds of 5/4.
Other frontrunners include former Love Island contestant Maura Higgins at 3/1, Inbetweeners actress Emily Atack at 4/1 and Maya Jama at 5/1.
She also said she had "never experienced such kindness and love in my whole life" and posted a public declaration of love to her boyfriend.
Burton, 27, later spoke out in defence of Flack, saying she has become the subject of a "witch hunt" following her arrest.
He also denied he had signed a non-disclosure agreement (NDA) relating to their relationship.
He wrote: "I'm tired of the lies and abuse aimed at my girlfriend. This is not a witch hunt this is someone's life.
"I have not signed any NDA. Why would I? Caroline is the most lovely girl. Loyal and kind. She doesn't deserve any of this."
An ITV spokesman said: "ITV has a long-standing relationship with Caroline and we understand and accept her decision.
"We will remain in contact with her over the coming months about future series of Love Island."
A Met Police spokesperson said: "Caroline Flack, 40, of Islington was charged on Friday, 13 December with assault by beating.
"She will appear on bail at Highbury Corner Magistrates’ Court on Monday, 23 December.
"This follows an incident at approximately 05:25hrs on Thursday, 12 December after reports of a man being assaulted.
"He was not seriously injured."
A London Ambulance Service spokesman said:"We were called yesterday (Thursday 12 December) at 5.28am to reports of a person unwell in Islington.
"We sent an ambulance to the scene and took a person to hospital."