Former Q-C Area Priest Pleads Guilty to Sex Abuse Charges

Quad-City Times [Kewanee IL]
Downloaded April 25, 2005

KEWANEE, Ill. — A Kewanee man and former Peoria Catholic Diocese priest who allegedly molested a former altar boy has pleaded guilty in Wisconsin to two counts of second-degree sexual assault.

Francis Engels, 69, could receive up to 20 years in prison at a sentencing hearing June 3 in Milwaukee.

His alleged victim, 37-year-old Dan Koenigs of Cisco, Ill., said he will not comment on the case until after Engels is sentenced. His attorney, Joseph Klest of Schaumburg, Ill., said Koenigs reported to Milwaukee authorities last year that Engels sexually abused him during overnight trips to the city in 1981 and 1982. At that time, Engels was serving as the priest of St. John Vianney Catholic Church in Cambridge, Ill., and Koenigs was a member of the parish.

Koenigs alleges that Engels also abused him in Illinois, but criminal charges cannot be brought there because the statute of limitations has expired.The clock effectively stopped on the Wisconsin allegations when the priest left that state, Klest said.


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