Father Carmen Sita

United Press International
September 17, 1982

Archdiocese officials have supported a Roman Catholic priest who has been charged with sexually assaulting at least one teenage boy and distributing marijuana.

Father Carmen Sita, 37, was charged with committing several acts of sexual assault that took place before Sept. 15, 1982, Hudson County Prosecutor Harold Ruvoldt, Jr. said Thursday.

"Father Carmen C. Sita, a priest of the archdiocese of Newark, has done good work since he was ordained in May of 1976," Monsignor Franklyn Casale, chancellor of the archdiocese, said in a statement. "He is the object of our deepest concern, as is the whole community in Jersey City.

"We, of course, are unable at the moment to discuss the case," said Casale, speaking for Archbishop Peter Gerety. Gerety was attending a church conference in Washington, D.C.

When asked if only one juvenile was involved in the assaults, Ruvoldt refused to comment. Nor would he reveal the age of the victim or victims or the dates of the attacks, all of which took place in Jersey City.

Sita, a priest of St. Aloysius Church in Jersey City, turned himself over to the rape unit of the Jersey City Medical Center at 1:30 p.m. Wednesday, police said. A warrant had been issued for his arrest earlier in the day.

The priest was arraigned before Superior Court Judge Lawrence Bilder and released without bail in the custody of the county probation office.


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