Rev. Pagacz Denies Peering Incident

By George Graham
The Union-News
February 18, 1992

The Rev. Julian Pagacz denies the allegation of a former neighbor who said she caught him looking in her window late one night in 1988, his lawyer said yesterday. Pagacz, 50, the pastor of St. Valentine's Polish National Catholic Church at 127 King St., pleaded innocent Thursday in Northampton District Court to a charge of raping a 16-year-old girl from Poland and indecently assaulting a Hampshire County girl, age 17.

Pagacz is also serving as the pastor at Holy Mother of the Rosary Church on Bell Street in Chicopee while the priest there is on extended leave.

The Sunday Republican reported this week that a city woman wrote out a trespass notice against Pagacz in 1988. Cynthia M. Childs said she sent a copy of the trespass notice to Pagacz by certified mail, after she caught him peering into her window late one night.

Childs said the incident occurred when she was living at her parents' house at 188 Rocky Hill Road, next door to property Pagacz owns at 206 Rocky Hill Road.

Charles Maguire, the Northampton lawyer who is representing Pagacz, angrily denounced Childs' contention yesterday and said no formal charges had ever been made against Pagacz in the incident.

"I cannot try a non-existent case in a courtroom, I cannot try gossip and innuendo in a newspaper," Maguire said. "Mr. Pagacz denies any wrongdoing in the case with the neighbor. This man was never charged with anything."

A trespass notice is an unofficial written document which anyone can write. If the person described in the order then goes on the property, he can be arrested for trespassing, police said Saturday.

According to Maguire, the situation between Pagacz and his neighbors resulted from misunderstandings between the two parties.

Maguire described the allegation that Pagacz looked in Childs' window as "the most irresponsible form of gossip-spreading imaginable . . . It is like asking 'Is there any truth to the rumor, sir, that you are beating your wife?' "

Childs was unavailable for comment last night.

According to Maguire, his client is the victim of a witch-hunt.

Pagacz is alleged to have raped the Polish girl, who has been living here about two years, sometime between the summer of 1989 and last May in Northampton, according to police and court documents.

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