Crime

South Florida priest jailed, accused of drugging and raping a parishioner

- Sacred Heart Catholic Church, Miami-Dade Corrections

A Homestead priest was jailed Friday night on allegations he drugged a woman and raped her.

Father Jean Claude Jean-Philippe, the parochial vicar at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Homestead, has been charged with sexual battery of an incapacitated victim . He remained jailed Saturday at the Turner Guilford Knight Correctional Center and has been placed on administrative leave while the allegation is being investigated.

According to a police report, the woman is a parishioner at the church, and Jean-Philippe had even officiated her wedding.

In October, the 64-year-old priest invited her to his home on the church grounds, offering her tea. She passed out and after drinking the tea, according to the police report, she woke up naked in his bed about two hours later.

The woman had no idea what happened in that two hours. When she awoke, Jean-Philippe was “standing over her bed in his white underwear and no shirt,” according to the report. She told police she smelled bodily fluids, but the priest denied assaulting her.

Police were not notified until after she confided in another clergy person. The Archdiocese said it received a complaint about the priest on March 4, and after meeting with the woman, “directed” her to notify law enforcement.

According to the arrest report, police detectives questioned Jean-Philippe, who admitted “he massaged the victim in the nude with oil” and raped her.

The Archdiocese released the following statement on Saturday:

“Effective immediately, Archbishop Thomas Wenski has removed Fr. Jean-Philippe from Sacred Heart Catholic Church, placing him on administrative leave. The Archdiocese of Miami continues to fully cooperate with law enforcement as this allegation against Father Jean-Philippe continues to be investigated.”

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