Friday, November 12, 2010

Church and ex-minister sued
Church, ex-minister sued
Lawsuit filed after sexual-assault conviction
November 10, 2010An Aurora church and its former minister are the targets of a lawsuit filed by the family of a girl who says the minister sexually assaulted her on church property.

The lawsuit, filed Nov. 1 in Kane County, names Lee A. Palmer and Bountiful Blessings Ministries.

The lawsuit comes in the wake of Palmer's conviction and sentencing earlier this year for predatory criminal sexual assault and aggravated criminal sexual abuse. He is serving a 19-year prison sentence.

Palmer, 63, is alleged to have sexually assaulted the girl, who is not identified in the suit, from June 2006 through September 2008. When the assaults began, the girl was 9 years old, the suit said.

The acts took place at the church, 15 S. East Ave.; at a food pantry operated by Bountiful Blessings at 901 E. Galena Blvd.; and in a church-owned van, the suit said.

Palmer, the lawsuit alleges, "used his position as a moral and spiritual leader in order to gain the trust of his church members … in order to posture his sexual advances in a non-dangerous way."

The church did not immediately return a call seeking comment.

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