Two policemen ended up in the hospital after an elderly catholic priest, Father Peter Slocombe attacked them while resisting arrest for groping women on a train.
The 72-year-old priest punched and kicked the officers in the face as he protested his innocence, yelling: “I’m a man of the cloth.”
One officer’s nose was broken and both had cuts and bruises. They called for back-up before bundling the British priest, who was not wearing his robes, into a squad car at Rome’s main station.
Two women in their 40s had alerted police that he had touched them on the bottom and chest. He ran off after they pointed him out and was chased for several minutes before the struggle.
Father Slocombe, who was on holiday, is parish priest at St Joseph Church in Tewkesbury, Gloucs, and Catholic chaplain at the University of Gloucester. Parishioners had planned a party for him next month to celebrate his 50 years as a clergyman.
A police spokesman said: “This guy was crazy. He was punching and kicking out at the officers. He kept saying he was man of the cloth and was innocent but we have witnesses who say he was touching two women on the train and the victims identified him.”
He got a two-year and eight month house arrest sentence at a Rome court for sexual assault and resisting arrest.