Priest takes plea deal in sexual abuse investigation

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DETROIT, Michigan — A Catholic priest has pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor after a Detroit-area jury said it was having trouble reaching a unanimous verdict in his sexual abuse trial.

The attorney general’s office says Father Patrick Casey pleaded guilty Tuesday to aggravated assault. He was accused of engaging in sex acts with a younger man who was struggling with his Catholic faith and homosexuality and had sought Casey’s counsel in 2013.

The maximum penalty is a year in jail.

Casey at the time was a priest in Westland. TV station WXYZ reports that a Wayne County jury was deadlocked during deliberations Monday. Casey had been charged with third-degree criminal sexual conduct, a felony.

The Detroit Archdiocese says it learned about the allegations in 2015 and banned Casey from any form of church ministry.


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