DA Wants Names

The Sun Chronicle [Fall River MA]
Downloaded March 10, 2004

Bristol County District Attorney Paul Walsh is pressing the Fall River Diocese for information about priests accused of sexual abuse who were not on a list given to him 11 / sub 2 years ago.

Walsh has sent a letter to Bishop George Coleman of Fall River asking why 32 priests are listed in the diocesan report released two weeks ago as part of a national accounting of abusive priests, but only 23 priests were reported to his office in 2002.

" We wanted everything," Walsh said in a telephone interview Tuesday.

He had sought information on abusive priests at the time from Bishop Sean O'Malley, who is now archbishop of Boston.

" They assured us they gave us everything," Walsh said. " We asked about any allegations against any priests at any time."

If the diocese does not provide the information he is requesting, Walsh said he could summons diocesan officials to appear before a grand jury, a move he would consider taking.

" I want to get the answers one way or another," Walsh said.

According to diocesan spokesman John Kearns, Coleman has responded to Walsh with a letter saying that the diocese's attorney, Frederic Torphy, will clarify how the list of 32 priests was compiled.


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