Ex-brooklyn Priest Who Pleaded Guilty of Child Sex Abuse in 2008 Is Eligible for Parole, but Critics Want Him to Serve Full 18-year Prison Sentence
By Michael O’keeffe
New York Daily News
October 24, 2016
|David Clohessy, of the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, says the ex-priest should remain in prison. (SUSAN WATTS/NEW YORK DAILY NEWS)|
A former Catholic priest from Brooklyn who pleaded guilty in 2008 to sexually abusing an 8-year-old boy is up for parole — but a relative of the victim and an abuse survivors’ organization say he should remain in prison.
Steven Wolpert, who served as a priest at Our Lady of Perpetual Help in Brooklyn during the 1980s, pleaded guilty in 2008 to involuntary deviate sexual intercourse with a child under the age of 13, a first-degree felony.
A Pennsylvania judge sentenced Wolpert to nine to 18 years in prison.
The Pennsylvania Board of Probation and Parole reviewed Wolpert’s case in August, but has not yet decided whether to grant him early release.
The relative, who asked not to be identified to protect the victim's identity, said Wolpert should serve his full sentence because of the damage he did to the then-8-year-old child.
|Steven Wolpert was a priest at Our Lady of Perpetual Help in Brooklyn during the 1980s. (BACHNER)|
The relative also expressed concerns that the retired priest, who testified that he had slept naked with children, would abuse other kids.
David Clohessy, of the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, agreed that Wolpert belongs in prison.
Clohessy said the news of Wolpert's possible early release should prompt anyone else who may have been assaulted by Wolpert to contact law-enforcement officials.
“Kids will be safest if Wolpert serves his entire sentence of 18 years behind bars,” Clohessy said.