Priest Placed on Leave Pending Investigation

Associated Press State & Local Wire
April 8, 2004

The Catholic Diocese of Richmond placed a Charlottesville priest on administrative leave pending an investigation into his interactions with teenagers, the diocese said Thursday.

The Rev. Dennis Murphy, a diocesan priest and pastor of Holy Comforter Parish in Charlottesville, was ordained in 1974 and previously served as chaplain of a Veterans Affairs hospital in Providence, R.I. Murphy moved to Charlottesville in September 2002.

The Richmond diocese would not disclose who made the complaints against Murphy or comment on the nature of the complaints, releasing a press release that only said "we are responding to a combination of information which warrants our concern."

The diocesan review board will conduct the investigation into the case. The diocese did not immediately return calls seeking additional information.

A previous pastor at Holy Comforter, the Rev. Julian Goodman, was forced to resign in August 2002 for sexually abusing a seminary student in Goochland County during the 1970s.


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