Ex-Priest Waives Molest Hearing

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
May 27, 1999

An unemployed ex-priest could go to trial in Cambria County Court as early as September after waiving a hearing yesterday on charges he molested a 14-year-old runaway whom he picked up at a downtown Johnstown park six months ago.

The suspect, Joseph Gaborek, 54, has been accused of morals violations in the past, before and after leaving the priesthood in 1987.

"He's despondent," defense lawyer Robert Davis Gleason said of the latest case.

Police in East Conemaugh, just outside Johnstown, say Gaborek drove home with the boy after picking him up at Johnstown's Central Park.

According to the charges, Gaborek gave the teen beer, showed him a pornographic movie and touched his genitals. Police charged Gaborek with indecent assault, corrupting a minor and furnishing alcohol to a minor.

In a 1994 civil case involving another priest, retired Bishop James Hogan testified that Gaborek had been the focus of parishioners' sexual misconduct allegations, including one in 1984 in which a 16-year-old boy reported fleeing Gaborek and running a mile to a pay phone after the then-priest made a sexual advance as the two worked at a southern Somerset County church.


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