May 18, 2006

Gates priest linked to sex abuse

Democrat and Chronicle

Ernst Lamothe Jr.
Staff writer

(May 18, 2006) GATES Gates police have charged a priest at St. Jude the Apostle Church in Gates with four misdemeanors involving a 12-year-old girl.

Father John J. Steger, 80, was arrested Wednesday and accused of inappropriately touching the girl in late April and early May.

Steger was charged with two counts of second degree sexual abuse and two counts of endangering the welfare of a child.

"This is an especially sad and difficult case," said Gates Police Chief Tom Roche, who knew Steger personally and had previously attended the church. "It's always difficult especially when there is a child involved."

Police learned of the allegation after the girl reported the two incidents to her parents. The parents contacted the Roman Catholic Diocese of Rochester, who then contacted the police.

Posted by kshaw at May 18, 2006 05:17 AM