Former Bell County pediatrician sentenced to 51 months in prison for child pornography

Posted at 12:30 PM, Apr 20, 2018
and last updated 2019-02-14 18:09:26-05

A Bell County pediatrician who was suspended after he was arrested by the Texas Attorney General's Office for child porn in August 2018, was sentenced to prison on Thursday.

Authorities said 55-year-old John Middlemiss Palmer was sentenced to 51 months in prison, a little over four years, and 10 years of supervised release. 

He was also ordered to pay $27,000 in restitution, $3,000 for each of the nine victims. The court will not charge him of the $5,000 domestic violence trafficking fund, the court allocates special conditions. 

The Texas Medical Board said that they suspended the license of Palmer after he was arrested by the Texas Attorney General's Office for child porn.

Authorities arrested Palmer for one count of possession of child porn in 2018.

Palmer was a pediatric pulmonary physician at Baylor Scott and White and McLane Children's Hospital in Temple. He was arrested after investigators discovered child pornography was uploaded to an online storage account that he used.

A search of his office turned up images of child pornography on a digital storage device. 

Investigators said that they had recovered 425 images and 12 videos of child porn from Palmer.

Several devices were seized from Palmer’s home and office. During questioning, Palmer denied any involvement with child pornography.

Baylor Scott and White and McLane's Children's Hospital released the following statement: 

We are shocked and deeply troubled by the charges against Dr. Palmer.  We first learned of the investigation this week and acted swiftly – suspending the physician on the day we learned of the investigation and terminating him immediately after his arrest.  Dr. Palmer was employed by Baylor Scott & White as a pediatric pulmonologist for less than a year.  He was hired in May 2017, coming highly recommended and reviewed through our employee background screening and medical staff credentialing processes.

We are thoroughly cooperating with authorities in the ongoing investigation of Dr. Palmer.  At this time, we have no indication that Baylor Scott & White patients are involved in this matter.  As always, our patients’ well-being is our primary concern. 

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