Sunday, May 5, 2013

Archbishop John Myers' Admission



After denying the charge for several days, Archbishop John J. Myers reversed himself Thursday and acknowledged that a pedophile priest under his supervision, the Rev. Michael Fugee, repeatedly violated a binding legal agreement to stay away from children.

That will have to count for progress. But this goes well beyond the behavior of Fugee, who resigned his ministry that day. Myers was a party to that legal agreement, with a responsibility to protect children by ensuring that Fugee would keep his distance.

Given his failure in this case, and his long history of irresponsible stewardship over pedophile priests, it is clear that the archdiocese cannot be trusted to handle these cases on its own, at least while Myers continues to resist growing calls for his resignation.
The next move is up to Bergen County Prosecutor John Molinelli, who struck the agreement with Myers and Fugee in the first place.

Fugee was convicted in 2003 on a charge of aggravated criminal sexual contact after admitting that he fondled a teenage boy and derived sexual pleasure from the act. That crime draws a maximum penalty of five years in prison, but Fugee, like most first-time offenders, was sentenced to five years’ probation. He was also required to register as a sex offender under Megan’s Law.

NEW JERSEY

The Star-Ledger

By Star-Ledger Editorial Board

 May 05, 2013