BishopAccountability.org
 
  New Complaints against Priest Can't Be Prosecuted
4 Allegations against Ex-Valley Cleric Are Too Old, DA in Texas Says

By Ron Devlin
Morning Call (Allentown, PA)
October 15, 2002

Texas authorities investigating a former Allentown Catholic diocesan priest on sexual abuse allegations say reports of previous incidents in the Lehigh Valley and Berks County, even if proved true, would be of little use in prosecuting 73-year-old Rev. Edward R. Graff.

"We talked to Lehigh County authorities," said Briscoe County District Attorney Becky McPherson in Texas, "and they told us the statute of limitations had expired."

After Graff was arrested Oct. 4 on charges of molesting a 15-year-old boy, Texas authorities received reports of similar sexual abuse allegations from people in the Allentown Diocese.

Jay Foster, a Texas Ranger on the Graff case, told an Amarillo newspaper he had received four calls from Pennsylvania residents. McPherson acknowledged Monday that she, too, had received calls from people who said they had been abused by Graff before he left the Allentown Diocese in 1988.

McPherson did not recall how many calls her office had received, but said they came from people in the Allentown and Reading areas. Some calls, she said, were anonymous.

None of the allegations from Pennsylvania residents, the district attorney said, are being investigated by Texas authorities.

Voices from his Lehigh Valley past, however, could return to haunt Graff if he is convicted in the Texas case.

"We have jury sentencing in Texas," McPherson explained, "and a person's background can come up during the sentencing phase."

Graff already faces sexual abuse allegations in one Texas case, but authorities are investigating allegations from 15 others in Texas who claim to be his victims.

When the investigations are complete, perhaps by December, prosecutors will take the allegations before a Texas grand jury. The grand jury will decide if Graff should be charged, and with what offense, if any.

When Graff left the Allentown Diocese, he went to New Mexico to undergo treatment for alcoholism.

He is in a Lubbock area hospital being treated for a broken hip. Authorities say he fell while taking a shower at the Swisher County Jail. Briscoe County does not have a jail, Sheriff Jeff Fuston said, and uses the Swisher jail.

Fuston ruled out foul play in the aging priest's injury while in jail. He said he was being held in isolation, and was alone in the shower when he fell and broke his hip.

"He's very frail," the sheriff said.

 
 

Any original material on these pages is copyright © BishopAccountability.org 2004. Reproduce freely with attribution.
     
guide of business management sytem guide of job opinions guide of capital goods guide of make fast money guide of Debt restructuring guide of home business guide of income money guide of hospital products guide of international market guide of repair roof before winter guide of website income guide of secure your business guide of face makeup tools guide of jewellery arts guide of tv shows guide of best places on earth guide of job plans guide of cheap cars guide of creating products guide of women tools guide of eat less guide of car insurance process guide of sport stuff guide of garden home guide of cheap insurances guide of electronic tech guide of healthy feeding guide of what is next in fashion guide of improve company guide of tactical insurance guide of make money at home guide of development in business guide of dept loan guide of cooking secrets guide of correct companies guide of jobs with more income guide of reviews o general products guide of improving technology guide of ideal job guide of business sectors guide of dept problem guide of unlimited business guide of suitable insurance company guide of money cars guide of how to market guide of heatlhy diet tips guide of decoration tipse guide of security problems