Tyne & Wear

Longhorsley plane 'grope' vicar jury fail to reach verdict

The Reverend Peter McConnell arriving at a previous court hearing
Image caption The Reverend Peter McConnell was accused of touching a man on a Philadelphia to London flight

The jury in the case of a vicar accused of groping a man on a trans-Atlantic flight has failed to reach a verdict.

The Reverend Peter McConnell was accused of touching the man while he slept on a flight between Philadelphia and Heathrow in March 2017.

Standing trial at Newcastle Crown Court, the 63-year-old, of Longhorsley, Northumberland, denied sexual assault.

After five hours of deliberations the jury was discharged having failed to reach a verdict.

The court had heard Mr McConnell, vicar at St Helen's Church in Longhorsley, and the 23-year-old American had never met before.

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