Catholic Diocese of Green Bay: Firm to review clergy files in wake of sexual abuse crisis

Green Bay Press-Gazette

September 27, 2018

By Shelby Le Duc

The Catholic Diocese of Green Bay, with the help of a third party investigator, is launching an investigation next month into of all of its priests and Deacons.

A Texas-based independent investigative firm will be conducting an “outside review of the files of all priests and deacons who have served in the diocese,” according to a Catholic Diocese of Green Bay news release.

“As we work to assure all clergy abuse cases have been identified and objectively reviewed, the diocese has arranged for Defenbaugh & Associates Inc., who specializes in this kind of work, to review files beginning in early October,” the release states.

The announcement of the investigation comes a week after news broke that retired Bishop Robert Morneau withdrew from public ministry. He said his exit was prompted by his failure to report a priest’s sexual abuse of a minor almost 40 years ago that allowed the priest to assault other youths.

In a letter to the diocese, Morneau admitted to failing to report to police a 1979 incident in which former priest David Boyea sexually abused a child. Boyea then went on to abuse more children, and in 1985 pleaded guilty to first-degree sexual assault of a child and was sentenced to 10 years in prison. He was also permanently removed from the priesthood.

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