Posted: Monday, August 29, 2016
By John Schreier
A retired Council Bluffs priest, St. Albert volunteer chaplain and former principal was arrested last week on suspicion he was looking at the genitals of high school students in a public restroom.
The Rev. Paul Monahan, 83, was charged on Thursday, Aug. 25, with five counts of invasion of privacy, a serious misdemeanor, according to online court records. He was released on his own recognizance the next day.
When reached at home Monday afternoon, Monahan declined comment on the allegations. His attorney, Bill McGinn of Council Bluffs, said the allegations against Monahan were completely false and that his client would be pleading not guilty to the charges.
Monahan was suspended on July 8 from all public ministries, according to the Diocese of Des Moines, pending the outcome of his legal proceedings. His preliminary hearing has been set for Friday, Sept. 16.
The Daily Nonpareil first reported Monahan’s arrest online Friday evening, following a statement released by the Diocese of Des Moines provided to the newspaper by St. Albert Catholic School. The newspaper obtained court documents Monday, which were initially unavailable, outlining the details of his arrest.
According to Monahan’s arrest affidavit, the alleged incident involved five male high-schoolers who were in the restroom during an April 4 track meet at Treynor High School that featured 11 area schools.
The students, along with a witness, told authorities that Monahan, who was using the restroom at the time, stepped back to look at their genitals. When confronted by one of the students, Monahan reportedly left both the restroom and track meet hurriedly.
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