6 priests with Decatur ties on clergy sex abuse list

Herald & Review

November 30, 2018

By Jim Bowling

A list released Thursday by the Diocese of Springfield with the names of 19 priests accused of sexually abusing children includes at least six clergy who worked in Decatur at times.

The disclosure was in response to a review by the state Attorney General’s office, which since August has been investigating the Roman Catholic Church after a Pennsylvania grand jury report identified at least seven priests with a connection to Illinois.

Springfield Diocese spokeswoman Marlene Mulford on Thursday declined a Herald & Review request to disclose where each of the 19 worked, but a review of public documents and newspaper clips show those with Decatur ties are:

Garrett Neal Dee, who worked at Holy Family Catholic Church in Decatur in 1971, according to a Springfield State Journal-Register article in 2002. He left his parish in Texas after acknowledging that he had sexually abused children while in the Catholic Diocese of Springfield years ago.

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