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Sexual abuse charges ‘unfounded,’ Chicago priest reinstated

June 16, 2019

CHICAGO (AP) — A Roman Catholic priest cleared of sexual abuse has been reinstated as pastor of a Chicago parish.

The Rev. Patrick Lee was removed from Mt. Carmel Parish in January after an allegation he abused a minor nearly 40 years ago at a South Side parish. Church officials forwarded the complaint to the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services and the Cook County state’s attorney’s office.

Cardinal Blase Cupich announced Saturday in a letter to Mt. Carmel parishioners Lee was being reinstated after state officials found the allegation to be “unfounded.” The Independent Review Board of the Archdiocese of Chicago also found there was “insufficient reason to suspect” Lee committed the crime.

DCFS spokesman Jassen Strokosch on Sunday told the Chicago Sun-Times that due to privacy concerns, he was unable to provide further details about the case.

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