Bishop had concerns with Maryville counselor before abuse

Updated 11/6/2014 8:52 PM

Bishop John Keating already had concerns with former priest Bob Friese before Friese was hired to work with at-risk youths at Maryville Academy in Des Plaines.

When he learned years later of his hiring, Keating, the archdiocese's chancellor, "hit the ceiling," according to an internal memo contained in a 161-page file detailing sex abuse allegations involving Friese.


In 1984, Friese, then 33, was charged with sexually abusing a teen whom he met at Maryville, but the teen later ran away. The victim, who was 13 when he met Friese, testified in court the abuse occurred from 1982 to 1984 and involved genital fondling and oral sex.

Friese, who formally resigned from the priesthood in 1985, was convicted and sentenced to probation by a Cook County judge.

A 1985 archdiocese memo reveals that Keating believed Friese was a "severely disturbed individual," even though Keating emphasized there was no evidence of pedophilia when he spoke with him in 1980.

That year, Keating prepared a report in which a victim said Friese provided drugs and alcohol to a group of boys and massaged them, and engaged in what appeared to be a sex act while he was assigned associate pastor at St. Cyprian Parish in River Grove from 1978 to 1980.

Keating later said an earlier memo had said everyone was dressed and it was "in the context of roughhousing."

Friese, who was formally removed as a priest in 1987, couldn't be reached for comment.

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