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Curate is charged over teenagers

28 November 2014

by staff reporters

THE Assistant Curate of Loddon Reach, Reading, the Revd Peter Jarvis, has been charged with 12 sexual offences against two teenage girls and two teenage boys. He has denied eight counts of inciting a child to engage in sexual activity, three counts of sexual activity with a child, and one count of attempting to cause or incite a child to engage in sexual activity.

The case is being heard at Reading Crown Court. He was suspended in May last year, as soon as he was arrested (News, 31 May).

Other cases. The Bishop of St Albans, Dr Alan Smith, has imposed the maximum penalty in his power on the Vicar of St Francis's, Luton, the Revd James Ogley. He has been removed from office and prohibited from exercising any ministry as a priest in the Church of England for the rest of his life. He was sentenced to two years' imprisonment last month after admitting asking children on an internet chat blog to assault other children sexually (News, 3 October).

The Assistant Curate of St Giles with Butterton, Newcastle under Lyme, the Revd Stephen Vincent, was removed from office in September and prohibited from exercising Holy Orders for eight years. A disciplinary tribunal heard that he admitted sending explicit text messages and committing adultery. A spokesman for the diocese of Lichfield said: "As Mr Vincent said himself, he has betrayed his wife, his family, and his church. We continue to offer every support to the Vincent family and the parish of St Giles in this difficult time, and hold them all in our prayers."

A priest, the Revd David Davies, has been charged with assaulting a woman, and driving while over the legal alcohol limit. The incidents are alleged to have happened on 4 November, two months after Mr Davies was suspended as Priest-in-Charge of Cockington and Torre, on the edge of Torquay, in Devon. Mr Davies was appointed to the parishes in October last year. He has been a priest for 24 years, and spent many of them in Army chaplaincy.

In a statement, the Acting Archdeacon of Totnes, the Ven. Clive Cohen, said: "The [Exeter] diocese has been working to support him and his family pastorally and practically throughout this period. We were very grieved when the police informed us of the charges against him."

Mr Davies was listed to appear at Torquay magistrates court last week, on charges of driving in a public place while over the limit, and assault by beating. He was excused from appearing in person, however, after his lawyer, Alan Parsons, handed a letter to the district judge. Its contents were not read out. He gave the priest's address as care of the Bishop's Palace, Exeter.

Mr Davies, who has yet to enter a plea to the charges, was bailed to reappear on 8 December.

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