|Catholic Priest Arrested in Massena
Felony Charges: Nicholville Resident Is Accused of Having Sexual Contact with at Least Four Children
By Chris Garifo
Watertown Daily Times
February 28, 2008
MASSENA — A Roman Catholic priest has been arrested here on several felony counts of having sexual contact with children, state police in Montgomery County said.
John W. Broderick, 47, Nicholville, was arrested Monday on three counts of first-degree sexual abuse, one count of second-degree sexual abuse and four counts of endangering the welfare of a child. The sexual abuse charges are all felonies and the endangering of a child charges are misdemeanors.
Broderick was arraigned in the town of Palatine Court and was sent to the Montgomery County Jail, Fultonville, where bail was set at $50,000 cash or $100,000 bond.
State police made the arrest on a complaint from a Montgomery County family. The victims' father said Broderick befriended his family and had become its spiritual adviser, state police said.
Over the course of several months last year, Broderick had inappropriate sexual contact with at least four family members ranging in age from 5 to 11, state police said.
Broderick left Montgomery County sometime in May and became associated with the Holy Name of Jesus Academy in Massena, where he was arrested.
The academy's principal, Sister Marie Reginald of the Dominican Sisters of Idaho, declined to comment.
"We do not comment about allegations of possible criminal activity," she said.
The academy was opened in September in the former Three Rivers Elementary School on Route 37. The 40-acre property was sold for $840,000 to the all-girls school being run by the Dominican Sisters.
The academy is listed with the state Education Department as a non-public school but no grade organization was available.
According to a newsletter, the Regina Coeli Report, published by the Society of St. Pius X in December, Broderick assisted in the blessing of the school. The newsletter said the school opened with 30 day students and 20 boarders in preschool through seventh grade. The faculty has eight sisters, who also live on campus, and three lay teachers.
The Dominican Sisters and their managing group, the Society of St. Pius X, are Catholic organizations but are not recognized by Pope Benedict XVI. They are considered "schismatic" because they are traditionalist Catholics who do not follow Vatican decrees of policy.
Broderick is assigned to the Syracuse Diocese of the Catholic Church but his official faculties were suspended earlier this year, state police said.
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