February 07, 2005

Diocese faces DA inquiry

The Dallas Morning News

09:03 PM CST on Monday, February 7, 2005

By BROOKS EGERTON / The Dallas Morning News

Dallas County District Attorney Bill Hill is launching a broad criminal investigation of how Catholic Bishop Charles Grahmann and his staff have handled sexual abuse cases, officials confirmed Monday.

The goal is to determine whether the Dallas Diocese "has received any allegations of abuse by members of the clergy that have not subsequently been reported to law enforcement," said Rachel Horton, a spokeswoman for Mr. Hill.

She said two recent disclosures made prosecutors suspicious of the diocese's written insistence, in 2002, that it had no one in the ministry with "any indication of violations of state laws relating to minors."

First, a Rockwall pastor who announced his resignation Sunday had been accused in sworn statements in the early 1990s of sexually harassing boys at jobs in Dallas and Plano, The Dallas Morning News reported Monday. Accusers said they saw no sign that the diocese investigated the allegations or reported them to state authorities.

Posted by kshaw at February 7, 2005 10:25 PM