Joliet Priest Charged with Sex Abuse
By Matthew Walberg
December 21, 2006
A Joliet priest who authorities said previously pleaded guilty to child molestation was indicted today for allegedly fondling two teenage brothers.
Louis Rogge, 76, was charged with four counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse and was expected to surrender to authorities this morning, said Charles Pelkie, spokesman for Will County State's Atty. James Glasgow.
Pelkie described Rogge as a "spiritual adviser" to the victims and a longtime friend of their family. He said that in the summer of 1996, Rogge abused one of the boys, who was 15 at the time, and three years later abused his brother, by then 15 as well.
In 1974, Rogge pleaded guilty to child molestation charges in Athens, Ga., and was sentenced to six years of probation, according to Pelkie.
"The boys' family members brought the allegations to our office within the past year," Pelkie said. "Our investigators took it up and reviewed the case, interviewed the victims and that's what led to the charges."
Pelkie would not say where the incidents occurred.
Rogge is a Carmelite priest and is not part of the Joliet Diocese. Aggravated criminal sexual abuse is a Class 2 felony carrying a possible sentence of 3 to 7 years in prison.
"We believe this is the first case of sex abuse involving a Catholic priest to be charged in Will County since the Catholic sex abuse national scandal in 2002," Pelkie said.
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