A female vicar been cleared of sexually abusing two girls more than 40 years ago when she was 13.
Veronica Green was standing trial charged with child sex offences alleged to have been committed as a teenager growing up in North Staffordshire.
However, a jury found Mrs Green not guilty of five counts of indecency with a child and a single count of indecent assault following a trial at Stoke-on-Trent Crown Court on Wednesday.
The 58-year-old broke down in tears from the dock as the verdicts were returned by the jury.
Veronica Green (pictured) denied any sexual conduct towards the children and said she was unaware what she was doing was against the law at the time
Veronica Green (pictured), 58, has been cleared of six offences against two young girls, dating back more than 40 years, when she was a teenager living in North Staffordshire
Speaking outside the court, she said: ‘As a family we just want to get on with our lives.’
The vicar was suspended as the reverend of Marbury, Tushingham and Whitewell after a complaint was made to police in January 2020.
The offences were alleged to have taken place involving two girls, aged between five and 11 at the time, while Mrs Green was babysitting.
During the trial, she admitted she had exposed herself to the five-year-old and rolling a pen across herself, but denied any sexual conduct towards them and said she was unaware what she was doing was against the law.
Stoke-on-Trent Crown Court, where Mrs Green was today cleared of six counts of child sex offences alleged to have been committed when she was 13
Following the verdicts, the Diocese of Chester issued a statement saying she would remain suspended while ‘safeguarding and disciplinary procedures’ are followed.
Lead Bishop for Safeguarding, Julie Conalty, said: ‘Following Mrs Green’s acquittal, a formal church process now needs to take place to assess the situation within the context of its national safeguarding and disciplinary procedures.
‘Mrs Green will remain suspended during this time. Please continue to pray for everyone affected by this situation.’
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