3 Franciscan leaders charged in abuse at Pennsylvania school

Giles A. Schinelli, Robert J. D'Aversa, and Anthony M. Criscitelli (Pennsylvania Office of Attorney General)

JOHNSTOWN, Pa. (AP) – A Pennsylvania grand jury has concluded that three former Franciscan leaders allowed a friar who was a known sexual predator to take jobs, including as a high school athletic trainer, that enabled him to molest more than 100 children.

Charges against the three, including child endangerment, were announced Tuesday by the state attorney general following a nearly two-year grand jury investigation.

The three were the successive leaders of a Franciscan order near Hollidaysburg from 1986 to 2010. All now live outside Pennsylvania.

They supervised Brother Stephen Baker, who was accused of molesting children at Bishop McCort High School in Johnstown and schools in Ohio. Baker killed himself in 2013.

Attorney General Kathleen Kane says the Franciscan leaders knew Baker was a sexual predator but put him in positions that enabled him to molest children.

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