Archdiocese, St. Paul police have closed-door meeting - New York News

Archdiocese, St. Paul police hold closed-door meeting

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ST. PAUL, Minn. (KMSP) -

St. Paul police met with the currant vicar general and lawyers for the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis on Wednesday, but the meeting was not open the public or members of the media.

The location and length of the meeting were not disclosed, but Fox 9 News confirmed it wrapped up at about 4 p.m. and the recent allegations against the archbishop were not the only ones discussed.

Archbishop John Nienstedt has voluntarily stepped aside from all public ministry during the investigation of an allegation that he inappropriately touched a boy on the buttocks during a 2009 confirmation ceremony.

Nienstedt called the allegation "absolutely and entirely false,"and the archdiocese said they "stand ready to cooperate fully with the St. Paul police."

The president of the Catholic League, based out of New York, told Fox 9 News he is outraged by the accusations and is calling for the accuser and anyone who knows him to come forward.

"I've been doing this job for over 20 years, and I know there are some priests who are guilty of abuse," Bill Donohue said. "I've never defended someone who is guilty. I want the book thrown at them, but I've also seen a lot of priests who have been framed and while I can't say for certain what is going on with this one, it doesn't pass the smell test."

Donohue has been critical of the way the Catholic church is handling allegations of sex abuse overall, and the outrage in Donohue's voice could be heard as he went on about the allegations Nienstedt faces.

"I was a young boy myself, and if somebody had violated me one way or the other, it wouldn't take me 4 years to make a complaint. It would take me about 4 seconds," Donohue said. "That itself is spurious. Then, you say you have a group photo? Let's throw out the idea he happens to be an archbishop. What kind of a moron -- if you are going to molest someone, would anybody do something like this in public when the cameras are rolling? It just doesn't make any sense at all."

During a Tuesday press conference, St. Paul Police Chief Tom Smith aired his frustrations with claims made by the archdiocese that church officials have been fully cooperative.

"I want to let the public know one thing," Smith said. "Let me be very clear on this. We have -- through written and verbal requests -- made clear our desire to speak to individuals connected with the archdiocese, and we've been told, 'No.'"

Smith specifically mentioned the difficulty investigators have had contacting former Vicar General Kevin McDonough because repeated requests to speak with him have been denied by his attorney.

After Wednesday's meeting, St. Paul police said some questions were answered, and plans have been made for future discussions in the near future to get answers to other questions that remain.

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