April 09, 2006

Police might pursue '70s abuse case


By Frank E. Lockwood
Although Lexington's Catholic diocese received credible evidence in 2003 that a former priest had sexually and psychologically abused a 13-year-old child in Ashland in the late 1970s, the information was never forwarded to police, authorities say.

Diocesan spokesman Tom Shaughnessy says the church wrote Commonwealth's attorney Stewart Schneider in January 2004 and offered to cooperate, but got no response.

Ashland Police Capt. Don Petrella, to whom Schneider forwarded the letter, says the letter indicated only that a civil lawsuit had been filed in Northern Kentucky against former Ashland priest Steve Gallenstein, but the letter did not allege that the priest had committed any crimes.

If the church has evidence that a child was sexually abused in his city, Petrella says his department wants to see it.

Posted by kshaw at April 9, 2006 07:02 AM