Suffolk DA Didn't Investigate Priest

Cape Cod Times
May 24, 2013

Roman Catholic priest Joseph F. Byrne, who was reinstated to the status of "senior priest" Thursday because the Archdiocese of Boston found no evidence to substantiate an accusation he sexually abused a child in the 1970s, was not investigated by the Suffolk County District Attorney's Office after the allegation was forwarded to the office when the complaint was made in May 2012.

"We reviewed the case and concluded the statute of limitations bars any prosecution of the case," said Jake Wark, spokesman for the Suffolk DA's office. Wark said he could not comment on "the state of the evidence."

The office could not be reached for comment on Thursday when Byrne's reinstatement was announced.

Byrne was pastor at St. Matthew's in Dorchester from 1969 to 1975, which is in Suffolk County.

The 69-year-old priest, who lives in East Falmouth, according to that town's records, has been retired since 2008. He was helping out at St. Patrick's parish in Falmouth when the allegation of the four-decade-old incident of abuse was made. Byrne was immediately placed on administrative leave.








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