Kansas officials received 205 reports of priest abuse; opened 120 cases

Kansas officials received 205 reports of priest abuse; opened 120 cases

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The Kansas Bureau of Investigation has received 205 reports of clergy sexual abuse and opened 120 cases since it began investigating the state's Catholic dioceses nearly two years ago, the agency said Friday.

The Kansas Bureau of Investigation has received 205 reports of clergy sexual abuse and opened 120 cases since it began investigating the state’s Catholic dioceses nearly two years ago, the agency said Friday.

Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt asked the KBI in November 2018 to investigate Catholic clergy abuse in Kansas. A task force of six agents has been investigating reports of abuse from the public and is reviewing church documents.

The investigation involves the state’s four Catholic dioceses in Wichita, Salina, Dodge City and Kansas City, Kansas, along with the Society of St. Pius X, a breakaway Catholic group with a large branch in St. Marys.

KBI spokeswoman Melissa Underwood said the agency’s investigation is continuing and it was unclear how much longer it could take, The Kansas City Star reported.

Last September, Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt announced a similar investigation in his state had found 163 clergy members who had been accused of sexual abuse or misconduct of minors. Of those, Schmitt referred 12 former clergy members for possible criminal prosecution.

The Missouri investigation involved more than 2,000 priests and 300 deacons, seminarians and religious women dating back to 1945.

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