Bond set at $50,000 for Strongsville priest accused of receiving, possessing child pornography

By Randy Buffington
December 9, 2019

[with video]

Rev. Robert D. McWilliams, a Catholic priest working in Strongsville, appeared in court on Monday morning on chilld pornography-related crimes.

Bond was set at $50,000 for charges that include possessing, receiving, and distributing child pornography.

McWilliams was placed on leave by the Cleveland Catholic Diocese after he was handcuffed at St. Joseph Church and charged on Dec. 5.

The Ohio Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force (ICAC) arrived at St. Joseph Parish and searched McWilliams’ living and office spaces for evidence related to the crimes that were allegedly committed in Geauga County.

Laptops, a cellphone and an iPad were seized during the search.

"... After being notified of the matter, the diocese immediately placed Fr. McWilliams on administrative leave pending the outcome of this matter. St. Joseph Parish, Sts. Joseph and John School and the Diocese of Cleveland are committed to protecting children and stand ready to cooperate with law enforcement to assist in the investigation,” according to a statement released by the Catholic Diocese on Thursday.

McWilliams was ordained on May 19, 2017.

The case will now be bound over to the Cuyahoga County Grand Jury.



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