Nessel: Only ‘tip of the iceberg’ as 6th priest charged with sexual abuse 

    catholic clergy
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    Attorney General Dana Nessel continues to charge Catholic priests alleged to have engaged in criminal sexual conduct, something she indicated to the Advance last month would be forthcoming. 

    Nessel’s office on Monday announced it had charged Father Joseph (Jack) Baker of Wayne County with one count of criminal sexual conduct in the first degree. The charge against Baker originated based on a tip from the Archdiocese of Detroit, which had received a complaint, according to the attorney general’s office. 

    Nessel: More charges coming in Catholic clergy sexual abuse probe

    Baker has been a pastor at St. Perpetua Parish in Waterford in Oakland County since 2008. Prior to that, he was a pastor at St. Mary Parish in the city of Wayne, associate pastor at Sacred Heart Parish in Dearborn, and associate pastor at St. Hugo of the Hills Parish in Bloomfield Hills.

    Dana Nessel | Susan J. Demas

    Nessel’s office initially charged in May five priests with criminal sexual assault May. In a statement on Monday Nessel indicated that there will likely be numerous other charges as her office continues to investigate sexual abuse that has been covered up by the Catholic Church around the world for decades. 

    “This is just the tip of the iceberg,” said Nessel. “Our clergy abuse investigative team is working day and night to review the hundreds of thousands of pages of documents and files seized from all seven of Michigan’s dioceses last fall. At the same time, we continue to receive calls daily from victims who know we will listen to them, believe in them, and investigate their allegations. They deserve nothing less than our very best.”

    Nick Manes
    Nick Manes covers West Michigan, business and labor, health care and the safety net. He previously spent six years as a reporter at MiBiz covering commercial real estate, economic development and all manner of public policy at the local and state levels. His byline also has appeared in Route Fifty and The Daily Beast. When not reporting around the state or furiously tweeting, he enjoys spending time with his girlfriend, Krista, biking around his hometown of Grand Rapids and torturing himself rooting for the Detroit Lions.


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