A wealthy Connecticut mother of four — known for vacationing in Martha’s Vineyard frequenting black-tie events — has pleaded guilty to secretly filming three minors without their consent at her $10 million mansion.
On Jan. 19, Hadley Palmer, 53, of Greenwich, pleaded guilty in the state Superior Court in Stamford to three counts of voyeurism and one count of risk of injury to a minor as a part of a plea deal with prosecutors, the Associated Press, Stamford Advocate and Greenwich Time report.
As part of her plea agreement, Palmer pleaded guilty to these charges in exchange for having prosecutors drop other more serious charges she faced, AP reports.
Those included employing a minor in an obscene performance, a class A felony; conspiracy to employ a minor in an obscene performance; and second-degree possession of child sex abuse imagery, according to police, The New York Times reports.
The three victims were minors in 2017 and 2018, when the crimes took place, a Greenwich Police Department spokesman said on Monday, the Timesreports.
He said at least one of the minors was 15 or younger.
Palmer — who reportedly lives in a $10 million estate in tony Belle Haven, Greenwich’s exclusive waterfront enclave where Martha Moxley was murdered and Kennedy cousin Michael Skakel was convicted of killing her (which was later overturned) — was arrested on Oct. 25, 2021, online court records show.
The socialite, who is divorcing her husband of 28 years, venture capitalist Brad Palmer, was accused of filming unknowing victims naked or in their underwear with the “intent to arouse or satisfy the sexual desire of such person or any other person,” according to the voyeurism charges cited in court documents, AP reports.
Palmer, whose father, Jerrold Fine, founded a hedge fund, Charter Oak Partners Management in 1976, faces a sentence between 90 days and five years in prison, AP reports. She must also register as a sex offender, according to AP.
She began serving the 90 days on Feb. 4, at the York Correctional Institution in Niantic, online records show.
She is scheduled to be sentenced on Aug. 1, online court records show.
Her attorney did not immediately respond to PEOPLE’s request for comment.
It’s unclear how the alleged crime came to light, since Palmer’s file — including arrest warrant affidavits with details of the case — were sealed from the public on Feb. 1, according to AP, which fought the ruling.
According to AP and the Stamford Advocate, all that is known about what led to Palmer’s arrest is that “Between 2017 and 2018, the defendant knowingly photographed, filmed and recorded certain individuals without their knowledge or consent, and under circumstances where those individuals were not in plain view, and had a reasonable expectation of privacy, and at least one photograph taken by the defendant depicted a person who was a minor,” Judge John Blawie wrote in the ruling to seal the case from the public.
A spokesperson for the Greenwich Police Department did not immediately respond to PEOPLE’s request for information about the case.
Dr. Jerome Brodlie, 83, a Greenwich psychologist, was arrested in December and charged with failure to report abuse, neglect or injury of a child in connection with the case, the Times reports. His case has also been sealed.
Palmer’s case was sealed after she had applied for accelerated rehabilitation, in which cases are automatically sealed, the Stamford Advocate reports.
Her attorney argued that details of the case should be kept from the public since they could hurt the victims and have a “prejudicial effect” on Palmer, the Stamford Advocate reports.
Longtime AP reporter Dave Collins argued at the Feb. 1 hearing that documents in Palmer’s case could be redacted like other cases involving children, which would protect the victims while still informing the public about the details of the accusations, the Stamford Advocate reports.
Sealing cases like this is a way for wealthy defendants to protect themselves and is a dangerous precedent, Collins argued at the hearing, the Timesreports. “The appearance is almost as if this is a second-tier of justice, where some people keep things secret,” Collins said.
“The public needs to know how these cases are handled and adjudicated,” Collins said, according to the Times. “Everybody else’s case is online. Why isn’t Mrs. Palmer’s case?”
“There is no two-tiered justice,” Judge Blawie said, according to the Times.
That is some real life Cal Jacobs in ‘Euphoria’ sh*t right there — lock her up!