Tuesday, June 04, 2002

Chancellor date with grand jury postponed

By Marie McCain, mccain@enquirer.com
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        The chancellor of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati did not testify as planned before a Hamilton County grand jury Monday because of a scheduling conflict.

        Officials said a new date for the testimony of the Rev. Christopher Armstrong has not been set. The chancellor keeps records for the archdiocese,

        Hamilton County Prosecutor Mike Allen declined comment Monday on the status of the grand jury investigation into allegations of sexual misconduct by Catholic priests and other church employees. Mark VanderLaan, an attorney for the archdiocese, also declined to comment Monday.

        Last month Hamilton County prosecutors, through that same subpoena, asked the archdiocese to turn over any document created after 1978, including correspondence, telephone logs, diaries, check stubs, appointment books, internal memos, contracts, personnel files and psychiatric records.

        Mr. Allen, in a letter to other prosecutors in the 19-county area of the archdiocese, said the agency did not turn over enough information as requested in an earlier subpoena.

        Prosecutors launched the grand jury investigation in April after church officials admitted that “fewer than five” priests continue to work in the archdiocese despite substantiated allegations of abuse.

        The Cincinnati archdiocese also turned over records subpoenaed by the Montgomery County prosecutor's office in Dayton.

        On Monday, Jim Knight, a spokesman for Montgomery County Prosecutor Mathias Heck Jr., said his office was still reviewing the records and is so far satisfied with what has been received.

       E-mail mmccain@enquirer.com


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