February 03, 2005

Accused priest being returned to Jackson parish

Commercial Appeal

By Bill Dries
February 3, 2005

A Catholic priest accused in a civil lawsuit of sexually abusing two teenage brothers will return to his parish in Jackson, Tenn.

Memphis Catholic Bishop J. Terry Steib announced Wednesday he is returning Father Richard Mickey to the ministry after the church's investigation concluded the allegations were "not credible."

Blain and Blair Chambers are suing Mickey, the Memphis Diocese and Bishop Byrne High School, claiming Mickey sexually abused them in 1980 when they were students at the high school and Mickey was a counselor and teacher. Mickey was not a priest at the time.

The lawsuit, filed in July, claims the twins each had repressed memories of the alleged abuse that surfaced during a July 2003 fishing trip in Montana.

It is the first time a priest in the Memphis Diocese has been publicly accused of child sexual abuse.

Depositions in the lawsuit are scheduled to begin later this month.

Posted by kshaw at February 3, 2005 06:03 PM