October 13, 2005

Documents detail allegations of sexual abuse by Erickson in 1992

Duluth News Tribune

Associated Press

EAGLE RIVER, Wis. - A priest believed to be the likely killer of two people at a northwestern Wisconsin funeral home in 2002 had been accused of fondling a boy eight years earlier, according to investigative reports.

No charges were filed against the Rev. Ryan Erickson, who hanged himself last year, as a result of the teenager's statements to a Vilas County investigator. The alleged incident occurred in the summer of 1992 when Erickson, then 19, was a seminary student at St. Mary's University in Winona, Minn., and the boy was about 16.

Investigators started looking into the incident about two years later, after a county social services worker notified them about a referral from a mental hospital about the alleged sexual assault, the documents said.

The Diocese of Superior "is extremely worried about these allegations even if no charges are brought," Vilas County investigator A.L. Thompson wrote in a May 1994 report concluding the accusations were "uncorroborated."

Posted by kshaw at October 13, 2005 06:56 PM