May 12, 2006

Some urge prosecutor to dig deeper into case

Toledo Blade


Lucas County Prosecutor Julia Bates declined to say yesterday whether the conviction of Gerald Robinson could lead to obstruction charges against other members of the Toledo Catholic Diocese in the slaying of Sister Margaret Ann Pahl.

Cold-case investigators probing the 26-year-old homicide have said they believe some local Catholic officials misled them in 2004 during their reopened investigation into the 71-year-old nun's death on April 5, 1980.

While the prosecutor would not discuss the matter, some in the community are calling on her office to delve deeper into the case.

"It would be a serious abrogation of Julia Bates' responsibility to turn away," said the Rev. Stephen Stanbery, a pastor at two Henry County parishes and a vocal critic of the diocese's handling of sex-abuse cases. "There is an impression that [Mrs. Bates] will turn the other way for fear of Catholic anger. That simply isn't right," he said.

Mrs. Bates, who said during a press conference that this case was not about the church but about a man who killed a woman, could not be reached yesterday to respond to Father Stanbery's comments.

Posted by kshaw at May 12, 2006 06:23 AM