Thursday, Dec 18, 2014
Quincy, IL News - QuincyJournal.com
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Two Iowa priests suspended over allegations of touching minors

1 year, 7 months ago by Bob Gough

Rev. Robert Harness of Davenport and Rev. John Stack, chaplain at Mercy Medical Center in Clinton, have been removed from their positions during the investigation; incidents allegedly happened more than 20 years ago

The Diocese of Davenport has temporarily removed two priests from their ministries after allegations surfaced that they inappropriately touched minors.

The Rev. Robert Harness, pastor at Holy Family Church, Davenport, and the Rev. John Stack, chaplain at Mercy Medical Center, Clinton, have been removed from their positions while an investigation is conducted, according to a news release Monday from Bishop Martin Amos.

The allegations have been reported to the Scott County Attorney's Office in compliance with a memorandum of understanding between the diocese and the county attorney.

Scott County Attorney Mike Walton said Monday the office will review the cases, according to the terms of the agreement.

"The diocese reports any and all allegations of sexual abuse to the county attorney’s office," Walton said in a statement. This is done without screening or investigation by the diocese regarding truth of the allegations.

"This office reviews the information provided to determine whether further investigation or filing of criminal charges is warranted," Walton said. "It would appear these most recent allegations occurred too long ago to pursue as criminal cases."

The county attorney's office determines whether the relevant statute of limitations has expired. In most cases, charges must be filed within 10 years of the complainant turning 18, according to Walton.

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