State Indicts Former Priest in '95 Sexual Assault Case

Star-Ledger (Newark, New Jersey)
January 15, 2004

A Catholic priest has been indicted on charges that he sexually assaulted a New Jersey boy repeatedly in 1995.

No trial date has been set for James F. Hopkins, 60, of Stuart, Fla.

The Camden Diocese settled a civil lawsuit with Hopkins' alleged victim in 1999. Hopkins is no longer a priest.

His accuser, Jonathan Norton, was 10 years old when the alleged assaults took place. Norton came forward last year and talked publicly about the case as allegations of abuse by Roman Catholic priests and cover-ups by church hierarchy made headlines.

Hopkins was arrested in Florida last April 17 and released from the Camden County Jail after posting $75,000 bail. He was indicted on charges of aggravated sexual assault, sexual assault, and endangering the welfare of a child.

If convicted on all counts, Hopkins could be sentenced to up to 20 years in prison.


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