Priest Accused of Sexual Abuse Dies

The Associated Press, carried in Quad-City Times [Iowa]
January 18, 2006

A retired Roman Catholic priest from the Dubuque Archdiocese, who was accused of sexually abusing several boys in the 1950s has died.

The Rev. William Goltz died Jan. 7 at Prairie du Chien Memorial Hospital in Prairie du Chien, Wis., where he was living. He was 80.

The archdiocese learned of his death after he died, but was not told the cause of death, said James Barta, vicar general for archdiocese.

"We found out that he had been in the hospital for several days, but we didn't know what for," he said. "We had heard his condition was deteriorating but (the archdiocese) was never told a diagnosis and was never alerted to any imminent death."

Goltz, who was ordained as a priest in 1950, had several abuse allegations against him. He was named in three lawsuits filed in 2005.

Goltz retired in 1991. In 1992, the Vatican barred him from celebrating mass in public or presenting himself as a priest publicly. In 2005, the Vatican ordered him to live a life of prayer and penance.

"We hope Goltz' passing will bring some measure of comfort and solace to his victims. He obviously can't hurt children any more," said Steve Theisen, the director of the Iowa Survivors' Network of those Abused by Priests.

Barta said the lawsuits against Goltz were now over.

"Any actions taken against him are over with because he died," Barta said. However, the archdiocese was also sued.

"There were lawsuits against him and there are lawsuits against archdiocese, so the ones against the archdioceses could be continued," Barta said


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