Scarborough Police is stepping up patrols around sites linked to Sir Jimmy Savile as the sex scandal surrounding the late TV star deepens.
Officers will monitor locations including Savile’s grave at Woodlands Cemetery and his former home on the Esplanade, where a memorial plaque was vandalised on Wednesday.
The plaque, which was installed last month, has since been taken down after the words “paedophile” and “rapist” were scrawled over it.
Scarborough Council is also reviewing security arrangements at Woodlands Cemetery amid fears Savile’s grave could also be targeted by vandals.
It follows allegations that the entertainer sexually abused teenage girls.
Andy Skelton, the council’s head of environmental services said: “We are concerned that the controversy surrounding Sir Jimmy Savile might result in disturbances in the cemetery that would be distressing to residents with relatives buried there.
“Any disturbance to a grave in the cemetery is likely to cause alarm and distress to those whose loved ones and friends are buried there, but most particularly the recently bereaved.
“Under these circumstances the council has no alternative but to review its security arrangements.”
North Yorkshire Police has warned people against defacing such memorials, saying these were “criminal acts”.
A spokesman said: “Police will investigate any allegations of criminal damage and deal with them appropriately.
“We would ask people that even if emotions are running high, not to engage in any criminal acts as they will be dealt with in the same way as any other criminal activity.”
In an ITV documentary, broadcast on Wednesday night, five women alleged they were sexually assaulted as teenagers by the DJ and presenter in the 1970s, some in his BBC dressing room.
Scotland Yard has taken charge of investigating the sexual abuse allegations against Savile as the number of alleged victims reached more than 40 – including one man.
The claims put further pressure on the BBC to reveal whether it knew about the accusations at the time – and for calls for an investigation into the corporation’s conduct.
Plans for a Scarborough statue of Sir Jimmy Savile to recognise his charity endeavours were dropped yesterday.
A spokesman for the Scarborough Sir Jimmy Savile Memorial Steering Group said: “The idea of a memorial followed the outpouring of national and local public affection for Sir Jimmy and was inspired by the best of intentions.
“But the idea was shelved in the light of the accusations and the sensitivity of the issues raised.”