The Latest on abuse and cover-up by Roman Catholic clergy in Iowa (all times local):
Iowa’s attorney general says he’s opening an inquiry into the handling of clergy abuse by the Roman Catholic Church.
In a statement Thursday, Attorney General Tom Miller says he’s appalled by cases of abuse and cover-up recently documented in Pennsylvania, “as well as cases in Iowa that have gone unreported.”
The announcement comes one day after The Associated Press exposed a three-decade cover-up of abuse by the Rev. Jerome Coyle by the Sioux City Diocese.
Miller says he expects all Iowa dioceses to comply with a request by the U.S. Justice Department to preserve documents related to abuse and personnel. He says victims can contact his office if they want to provide information.
Miller spokesman Lynn Hicks says the office doesn’t have the authority to conduct a statewide investigative grand jury, which documented decades of abuse in Pennsylvania. But he says the office is gathering information.
FORT DODGE, Iowa (AP) — A bishop is vowing to relocate a priest who’s living in an Iowa retirement home close to a Roman Catholic school despite his history of sexually abusing boys.
The announcement follows an Associated Press story exposing the church’s three-decade cover-up of abuse by the Rev. Jerome Coyle.
Coyle admitted in 1986 that he sexually abused approximately 50 boys over 20 years while serving at several Iowa parishes.
The Diocese of Sioux City didn’t tell police or the public, instead transferring Coyle to a treatment center in New Mexico and stripping him of his parish assignments.
In June, the diocese moved Coyle to the Marian Home in Fort Dodge, across the street from Saint Edmond Catholic School.
School administrators weren’t informed. Bishop R. Walker Nickless says Coyle won’t stay there.
Source: The Associated Press