Lockeford Priest Accused of Sexual Abuse

By Ross Farrow
Lodi News-Sentinel
October 11, 2007

Father Michael Kelly, the priest at St. Joachim Catholic Church in Lockeford, has been placed on administrative leave while the Stockton Diocese investigates an allegation that Kelly sexually abused a Stockton child sometime between 1984 and 1986, according to a prepared statement by Bishop Stephen Blaire.

Kelly denies ever sexually abusing anyone. He confirmed to the News-Sentinel on Wednesday that he is on leave from the diocese, but he said the reason is for a recurring problem with his ulcer. Kelly said he almost died from ulcer problems in 2000, and the problem has returned.

"I can tell you categorically that in my life, I have not abused sexually a child, or adult — ever," Kelly told the News-Sentinel.

Kelly said his concern is that the allegation of abuse will tarnish his reputation forever.

Following Stockton Diocese policy, officials reported the allegation to the Stockton Police Department.

For more on this story, see Friday's News-Sentinel.

Contact reporter Ross Farrow at


Any original material on these pages is copyright © 2004. Reproduce freely with attribution.