Former Chaplain to the Queen jailed for sexual assault

 

Former Chaplain to the Queen jailed for sexual assault

Author: 

George Conger

The former Vicar of Newport has been jailed for assaulting a 17-year old girl 40 years ago. Last week the Portsmouth Crown Court sentenced the Rev. Canon Stephen Palmer (68) to 39 months imprisonment for sexually abusing a girl in 1975-76 whilst he served as curate of Holy Rood Church Stubbington, Hampshire. A former Naval Chaplain, Palmer had served as chaplain to the Bishop of Portsmouth for three years, rector of Brightstone, Brook and Mottistone on the Isle of Wight from 1980 and 1991, rural dean of West Wight and vicar of Newport. He was appointed Chaplain to the Queen in 2008. Following his conviction on six counts of assault in May, a diocesan spokesman said: “We were distressed to hear that a former vicar from this diocese, the Rev Stephen Palmer, had been convicted on charges of indecent assault. Our thoughts and prayers are with the victim, who has had to live with the consequences of these assaults for many years. Since the 1970s, safeguarding procedures and policies have been transformed in the Church of England, as well as in society generally. The safety of the children and young people in our care is paramount. Each of our parishes is required to follow detailed safeguarding policies to ensure that our children and young people are kept safe.”

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