March 05, 2006

Records show ex-bishop didn't warn of abuse claims

Louisville Courier-Journal

Associated Press

LEXINGTON, Ky. -- A former Covington bishop didn't warn parishioners about an alleged sexually abusive priest and gave the priest high marks in a letter to another Roman Catholic official, according to unsealed court records.

The former bishop, Richard H. Ackerman, was informed that the priest -- the Rev. John B. Modica -- was an alleged pedophile who preyed on boys, according to the records. Parents urged church officials to stop the Lexington priest but were ignored.

The court records, hidden from view for decades, were made public Friday. The Lexington Herald-Leader and one of Modica's alleged victims, Sam Greywolf of Lexington, had asked Fayette Circuit Judge Mary Noble to unseal them.

The diocese said it would no longer object to their release. Modica, who is now retired and lives in Northern Kentucky, declined to comment. Ackerman died in 1992.

Posted by kshaw at March 5, 2006 07:17 AM