HOLLIDAYSBURG, Pa. (AP/KDKA) – Three Franciscan friars charged in Pennsylvania with allowing a suspected sexual predator to hold jobs where he molested more than 100 children have been removed from their religious assignments in Florida and Minnesota.
Friars Robert D’Aversa, Anthony Criscitelli and Giles Schinelli are scheduled to surrender Friday on child endangerment and conspiracy charges. They’re accused of assigning or allowing Brother Stephen Baker to remain at Bishop McCort High School, where he molested scores of children from 1992 to 2000.READ MORE: Cold Temperatures Prove Perfect For Ligonier Ice Fest
Schnielli sucessor Robert D’Aversa eventually removed Baker from Bishop McCourt but the grand jury said both he and his successor Anthony Crisitelli gave Baker other assignments with access to young people and that none of the three friars ever contacted police.
Baker killed himself in 2013 when Ohio church officials announced settlements involving students molested there in the 1980s.
The Rev. Patrick Quinn heads the Franciscan monastery near Hollidaysburg. He has removed Schinelli and D’Aversa from assignments in the Orlando, Florida, diocese and Criscitelli from pastoring a parish in Minneapolis.READ MORE: Pittsburgh Weather: Temperatures Rise Into The 20s, More Snow On The Way Sunday
The friars haven’t commented.
This comes on heals of the explosive grand jury report about sexual abuse in the Johnstown-Altoona diocese. Unlike the church leader cited in that grand jury report, these Franciscans are not protected from prosecution by the statute of limitations and if convicted could face time in prison.Staying Prepared: With Frigid Temperatures And More Snow On The Way, Stores Stocked Up
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