West Warwick School Deacon Charged with Molestation

By Thomas J. Morgan
Providence Journal
August 16, 2011

WEST WARWICK, R.I. -- The police have charged a deacon at a parochial school with child molestation, Detective Sgt. Scott Amaral said Wednesday.

Amaral said that at the end of June the principal of St. Joseph's School contacted the police to report an incident of inappropriate behavior on the part of a staff member involving three male middle-school-age students.

He said Detective Mark Salvas found "credible allegations of criminal behavior."

As a result of an interview on Wednesday morning, Amaral reported, the staff member, Deacon Laurence Gagnon, 71, of Warwick, was arrested and charged with child molestation.

Gagnon appeared in Kent County District Court, where bail was set at $30,000 with surety and the defendant was ordered to have no contact with anyone under the age of 16.

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