Church Investigates Priest over Sex Abuse Complaints in Mechanic Falls, Gray

Sun Journal
February 11, 2012

Bishop Richard Malone alerted parishioners in a letter over the weekend that the church is investigating a two-decades-old sexual abuse complaint against Father Antonin Caron, a Lewiston native.

The Roman Catholic Diocese of Portland received the complaint in November concerning incidents between 1982 and 1986 at Our Lady of Ransom Parish in Mechanic Falls and St. Gregory Parish in Gray, according to a news release.

Diocese spokeswoman Sue Bernard said the complaint involved someone who would have been a minor in the 1980s.

"We wanted to let the public know that a preliminary investigation is complete and the follow-up is that more investigation is necessary," Bernard said, adding, "We always report these cases to civil authorities."

Caron, 68, has served at a number of churches around the state, including St. Mary's in Lewiston. In 1994, he was acquitted on a charge of sexually assaulting a teenage girl in Washington County. Six years later, Bishop Joseph Gerry temporarily suspended Caron for several months for his ties to a pornographic website. Caron hasn't had a ministry since 2010.

Malone asked parishioners with information about the case to contact Deacon John Brennan in the diocese's Office of Professional Responsibility at 321-7836 or to call local police.


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