Little Rock diocese adds priest to list of accused sex abusers

Diocese of Little Rock.

The Catholic Diocese of Little Rock announced Wednesday that it has added another priest to its list of clergy that have been "credibly" accused of sexually abusing a minor.

Father Edward Simpson, who died in 1988, was a priest in Arkansas from the time of his ordination in 1954 until his retirement in 1986. Simpson's record shows that he served at Catholic churches in Fort Smith, Little Rock, Blytheville, North Little Rock, Jonesboro, Searcy, Eureka Springs, Malvern and Texarkana.

According to a news release, a person alleging to have been sexually abused as a minor by Simpson contacted the diocese April 20.

After an investigation was conducted "to the extent possible" and addressed with the diocese's review board, Bishop Anthony Taylor determined the allegation "though not able to be substantiated, is credible for [the] purposes of including [Father] Simpson on the Clergy Disclosure List," the release stated.

Anyone who has been sexually abused by a priest or representative of the Church is encouraged to first contact the Arkansas Child Abuse Hotline at (800) 482-5964; and to contact Deacon Matthew Glover at (501) 664-0340, ext. 361, or Laura Gottsponer, victims assistance coordinator, at (501) 664-0340 ext. 425.

A list of Simpson's status and assignment history is available at