Former Anglican priest sentenced for sexual abuse

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Former Anglican priest David Norton was sentenced to nine years in prison March 22 for sexually abusing four boys from Chippewas of the Thames First Nation nearly 40 years ago.

Norton was found guilty in November of one count of sexual assault and three counts of indecent assault against minors. In addition to jail time, he will be placed on the sex offender registry, prohibited from being around children, banned from the Chippewas of the Thames First Nation and forbidden to own a weapon, according to the CBC.

The children served as altar boys at St. Andrew’s Anglican, where Norton was rector from 1977 to 1983.

Norton, 72, was already serving a four-year sentence for sexual interference against a child, and he had pled guilty to this previous charge, which involved abuses that took place in the 1990s. His sentences will be served consecutively, totaling 13 years in prison.

In a release issued March 22, the diocese of Huron said it was “glad that justice has been served. We sincerely hope that the sentencing will mark the beginning of a healing process for those who have been hurt and for the entire Huron family who feels deeply disappointed and betrayed by Mr. Norton’s actions.”

Norton retired from full-time work with the diocese of Huron in 2011. He was also a professor at King’s University College in London, Ont.

After sexual abuse charges were laid in 2015, Norton’s permit to function as a priest was suspended by then-Bishop of Huron Robert Bennett. Norton relinquished his exercise of ministry as an Anglican priest in May 2016.

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Joelle Kidd
Joelle Kidd joined the Anglican Journal in 2017 as staff writer. She has worked as an editor and writer for the Winnipeg-based Fanfare Magazine Group and as freelance copy editor for Naida Communications.

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