December 31, 2013 |
DISTRICT ATTORNEY Seth Williams is taking an appeals-court ruling to the state Supreme Court in attempt to keep Monsignor William Lynn behind bars. But Lynn - whose felony child-endangerment conviction was overturned in state Superior Court last week - could walk free any day this week by posting 10 percent of $250,000 bail, which was granted yesterday by Common Pleas Judge M. Teresa Sarmina. "We can say with great confidence that the way the Superior Court read this law is not how this law is supposed to work," Williams said during a news conference yesterday.
December 30, 2013 |
A COMMON PLEAS judge who once excoriated Monsignor William Lynn for shielding "monsters in clerical garb" will now decide if he'll be able to get out of prison. Judge M. Teresa Sarmina will preside Monday over a bail hearing for Lynn, who on Thursday learned that the Superior Court of Pennsylvania had overturned his 2012 conviction on a felony child-endangerment charge. The three-judge appeals panel sided with Lynn's lawyers, who argued that the state child-endangerment law that was in effect while Lynn served as the secretary for clergy for the Archdiocese of Philadelphia applied only to parents and guardians of children.
December 27, 2013 |
MONSIGNOR William Lynn received a belated Christmas gift yesterday from the Superior Court of Pennsylvania: a get-out-of-jail-free card. A three-judge appeals panel overturned Lynn's 2012 conviction of felony child endangerment for his questionable oversight of Edward Avery, a now-defrocked priest from the Archdiocese of Philadelphia who pleaded guilty in 2012 of sexually assaulting an altar boy in 1998. Lynn, 62, who served as the archdiocese's secretary for clergy, has spent the last 18 months behind bars as part of a three- to six-year sentence.
January 28, 2013 |
JURY DELIBERATIONS began Friday afternoon in the trial of a Catholic priest and a former Catholic-schoolteacher who are accused of sexually assaulting the same altar boy in the late 1990s. The Common Pleas jury got the case after hearing closing arguments from Assistant District Attorney Mark Cipolletti and defense attorney Michael J. McGovern, who represents the Rev. Charles Engelhardt, 66. Defense attorney Burton Rose, who represents Bernard Shero, 50, gave his closing argument Thursday.
January 25, 2013
By Louis Lombardi Less than a year ago, Edward Avery, a defrocked priest, pleaded guilty to sexually abusing an altar boy from Northeast Philadelphia. The crime he admitted was horrific, and he was sentenced to 2 1/2 to 5 years in a state penitentiary. But last week, Avery was in court again recanting his confession. Now, convicted criminals routinely insist on their innocence, and we don't usually pay them much mind. But sometimes we should. The question of Avery's guilt affects not only him, but also Msgr.
January 18, 2013 |
A DEFROCKED Catholic priest who pleaded guilty last year to sexually assaulting an altar boy recanted his guilty plea on the witness stand Thursday, dealing a blow to prosecutors making a case against two other men on trial for allegedly molesting the same boy. Defrocked priest Edward Avery, 70, who is serving a 2 1/2-to-5-year state prison sentence, denied touching or even knowing the victim. Avery had been expected to buttress the prosecution's case against Rev. Charles Engelhardt, 66, and ex-teacher Bernard Shero, 49, who are being tried in Common Pleas Court for allegedly raping a St. Jerome Parish altar boy in 1998 and 2000, respectively.
September 20, 2012 |
Philadelphia prosecutors scoffed Tuesday at a new claim by defense lawyers that they withheld evidence that might have helped Msgr. William J. Lynn at his landmark child-sex abuse and endangerment trial. The District Attorney's Office never received a formal statement or polygraph results suggesting that Lynn's codefendant, former priest Edward Avery, lied when he admitted sexually assaulting an altar boy, according to Hugh Burns, chief of the appeals unit. The accuser's testimony about the 1999 attack became a cornerstone of Lynn's trial.
September 19, 2012 |
Philadelphia prosecutors scoffed Tuesday at a new claim by defense lawyers that they withheld evidence that might have helped Msgr. William J. Lynn at his landmark child-sex abuse and endangerment trial. The District Attorney's Office never received a formal statement or polygraph results suggesting that Lynn's codefendant, former priest Edward Avery, had lied when he admitted sexually assaulting an altar boy, according to Hugh Burns, chief of the appeals unit. The accuser's testimony about the 1999 attack became a cornerstone of Lynn's trial.
July 26, 2012 |
Msgr. William J. Lynn was sentenced Tuesday to three to six years in state prison by a judge who said he turned a blind eye while "monsters in clerical garb" sexually abused children, devastating families and shaking the Catholic Church across Philadelphia and beyond. Common Pleas Court Judge M. Teresa Sarmina said she believed Lynn was once the kind and selfless parish priest that his supporters so passionately described. But as the aide whom Cardinal Anthony J. Bevilacqua tapped to investigate clergy sex abuse, Lynn chose to protect the church over victims, she said.
July 23, 2012 |
Msgr. William J. Lynn is evil, conniving, and remorseless and deserves nothing but the maximum term in state prison for allowing Archdiocese of Philadelphia priests to sexually abuse children, prosecutors argued Friday. "Every workday he woke up, went to his office, and there pursued a deliberate, orchestrated plan that shielded and enabled child rapists," Assistant District Attorneys Mariana Sorensen and Patrick Blessington wrote in a sentencing memo. Lynn, 61, faces up to seven years in prison when he is sentenced Tuesday by Common Pleas Court Judge M. Teresa Sarmina.