Probe of priest sex charges dropped by police, continued by Scranton diocese

By Mark Guydish - [email protected]

Police have closed their investigation into a priest accused of sex abuse, but church officials have not, according to a statement from the Diocese of Scranton issued Wednesday.

“The Diocese of Scranton learned today that the investigation by the Pennsylvania State Police into Father Martin Boylan has been closed because of a refusal on the part of the alleged victim to testify,” the statement said.

“While civil authorities have made this determination, the ecclesiastical process in Father Boylan’s case continues. Father Boylan’s status as a priest removed from ministry with his faculties to exercise priestly ministry suspended, continues to remain unchanged.”

The case became public in April 2016, when the diocese issued a statement noting officials had received an allegation of sexual misconduct against Boylan regarding a minor who is now an adult.

Following church policy, the diocese notified the district attorney’s office for Wayne County, where the incident allegedly occurred, and reported the incident via the Pennsylvania ChildLine.

Boylan was also removed from ministry pending an investigation.

A graduate of the University of Scranton and ordained in 1980, Boylan was serving as pastor of St. Patrick’s Parish in Scranton and Episcopal Vicar for the Northern Pastoral Region of the Diocese of Scranton at the time of the accusation.

He had a long list of assignments over the years, including several in Luzerne County: St. Jude Parish in Mountain Top, St. Gabriel Parish (now Annunciation Parish) in Hazleton, St. Mary of the Immaculate Conception Parish (now Our Lady of Fatima Parish) in Wilkes-Barre, and Blessed Sacrament Parish, Wilkes-Barre.

By Mark Guydish

[email protected]

Reach Mark Guydish at 570-991-6112 or on Twitter @TLMarkGuydish

Reach Mark Guydish at 570-991-6112 or on Twitter @TLMarkGuydish