Des Moines Catholic Diocese Bishop suspends priest over abuse allegation

Radio Iowa

June 30, 2014 By Dar Danielson

The Bishop of the Des Moines Catholic Diocese has placed a priest on indefinite administrative leave over an allegation of sexual abuse. The Diocese released a statement that Bishop Richard Pates has placed Father Howard Fitzgerald on leave after a review committee determined an allegation of sexual abuse against a minor from decades ago is credible.

The statement says Fitzgerald cannot function as a priest during the leave and the matter is being forwarded to the Vatican. Fitzgerald has responsibilities at St. Thomas Aquinas Parish in Indianola, Immaculate Conception Parish in St. Marys and at Simpson College. The statement from Pates says the victim has asked to remain anonymous, and no other details of the alleged abuse have been released.

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