MIAMI — Jean-Claude Philippe, a 66-year-old priest in Homestead, Florida, was sentenced to 15 years in prison on Jan. 21 for the rape of a parishioner, according to Info24heures.
Philippe, of Sacred Heart Catholic Church, was found guilty of sexually assaulting the parishioner at his home in 2018.
According to the victim, Philippe gave her a tea-like drink while she was visiting his home. She then passed out and awoke later in his bedroom, naked.
The woman, whose identity is not being revealed because she is a sexual assault victim, said she considered Philippe a member of her family. They had vacationed together and she had named him godfather of her two children.
Assistant State Attorney Khalil Quinan addressed the crime in his sentencing memo, saying, “The defendant’s criminal actions … caused irrevocable damage to [the victim] personally that she will have to bear for the rest of her life.”
He was first arrested in October of 2021. Philippe maintained his innocence throughout the October trial and said that his police confession was false.
The sentence is the maximum term for the crime.