January 21, 2006

Retired priest charged in assault of girls in 1960s

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

Posted: Jan. 20, 2006
An 83-year-old retired Catholic priest now living in Missouri was charged this week in Dodge County with sexually assaulting three girls in Beaver Dam in the mid-1960s while serving as a hospital chaplain.

Father Bruce Duncan MacArthur has been taken into custody, and extradition proceedings have started, Dodge County District Attorney Steven Bauer announced Friday. A priest of the Diocese of Sioux Falls, S.D., he resides at a residential facility for abusive clergy outside St. Louis.

"This man is a sex offender," Bauer said in a prepared statement. "Although he is elderly, we cannot hesitate to bring someone to justice for horrific crimes merely because he has been able to avoid prosecution for so many years."

MacArthur was charged with two counts of sexual intercourse with a child, four counts of indecent behavior with a child and one count of attempted indecent behavior with a child.

He was able to be prosecuted for acts that allegedly occurred more than 30 years ago because he left Wisconsin after his hospital chaplaincy assignment ended in 1970 and never returned as a resident, according to Bauer and the criminal complaint.

Posted by kshaw at January 21, 2006 09:10 AM