Connecticut hedge fund heiress admits to secretly filming minor in her Greenwich mansion

Hadley Palmer, of Greenwich, pleaded guilty to felony voyeurism and risk of injury to a child
Fox News
Michael Ruiz
February 15, 2022

A judge has sealed the case of a wealthy Connecticut woman who pleaded guilty to secretly filming a minor and two others with lewd intent in her Greenwich mansion.

Hadley Palmer, 53, pleaded guilty last month to four felonies that took place on March 11, 2017, court records show. As part of the plea deal, prosecutors agreed to drop the two most serious charges against her.

But the case, and in particular documents detailing her specific crimes, will remain shielded from public view after a decision from Stamford Judge John Blawie, despite an objection from an Associated Press reporter in court.

In a Feb. 1 ruling, Blawie wrote 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," according to a filing obtained by the Stamford Advocate.

"I’ve never seen a whole file sealed like that," Joel Faxon, a longtime attorney who has represented victims of child sex abuse in several high-profile cases, told Fox News Digital Tuesday.

Lara Yeretsian, a high-profile criminal defense attorney, said a redaction of the victims’ names may not have been enough to protect their identities, given the case’s publicity and its involvement of children.

The case had initially been sealed after her arrest in October. Attorneys for the victims also supported a motion to seal the case filed by Palmer's attorney on Jan. 14, according to the New York Post.

Palmer’s attorney, Michael Meehan, did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Palmer pleaded guilty to four felonies, three counts of voyeurism and risk of injury to a minor, as part of a deal that dropped the more serious charges of employing a minor in an obscene performance, a Class A felony, and possession of child pornography.

Two of the voyeurism charges are Class D felonies, while the third, involving the minor, and the risk of injury to a child charge are Class C. Under Connecticut law, the charges indicate the victims were filmed without their knowledge while they had a reasonable expectation of privacy "with intent to arouse or satisfy the sexual desire" of the suspect or someone else.

Palmer could face between three months and five years in prison and will have to register as a sex offender when she gets out. She’ll also be on probation for up to 20 years.

"I don’t necessarily think that she got a great deal just because she is wealthy," Yeretsian said. "In fact, although she didn’t have to plead guilty to some of the more serious felonies she was charged with, her future is still in limbo and in the hands of the judge."

Still, she predicted a sentence on the lesser end of the scale due to Palmer’s lack of a prior criminal history and the "unusually long" probation length.

Blawie argued that the victims’ rights to privacy outweighed the public’s right to access the documents.

Faxon said the decision struck him as "highly unusual," but said that he respects the judge’s decision.

"Judge Blawie is an excellent judge," he said. "He’s been a judge for a very long time, so there could be circumstances, I suppose, that merit a full sealing — but I’ll say it’s extraordinarily unusual."

Still, he noted, in some of his own cases he’s struggled to even get the court to approve using a pseudonym for child abuse victims in civil cases.

"There’s no judge who would grant a sealed file, and I have a child who was heinously sexually trafficked," he said of one pending case against longtime CNN producer John Griffin. "Much worse than the charges in this case, these are federal life in prison charges that this guy Griffin is subjected to."

The investigation into Palmer also led to the arrest of an 83-year-old child psychologist, Dr. Jerome Brodlie, according to the Advocate report. He was accused of failing to report abuse, neglect or injury of a child. Online records show documents in his case have also been sealed.

Palmer, the daughter of the late hedge fund founder Jerrold Fine, is currently going through a divorce from her husband Bradley Palmer.

He did not immediately respond to a request for comment Tuesday.