Onalaska Priest Stands Mute to Child Porn Charge

By Anne Jungen
LaCrosse Tribune
July 28, 2010

The Rev. Patrick Umberger

A Diocese of La Crosse priest stood mute today to a possession of child pornography felony charge filed against him during a brief hearing in La Crosse County Circuit Court.

A not-guilty plea was entered on behalf of Patrick Umberger, 59, after he waived his preliminary hearing. The case is set for a status conference in October.

Umberger, priest at St. Patrick's Catholic Parish in Onalaska since 2005, was arrested July 15 when state agents found three sexually graphic pictures of nearly nude children on his computer, according to the complaint.

Umberger denied ever having sexual contact with children, but did admit to using a software program that regularly cleaned his computer hard drive.

The priest has been removal from active ministry pending the investigation, according to the Diocese.

See or Thursday's Tribune for more on this story.



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