Crookston Bishop allegedly interfered with sexual misconduct investigation

Pope’s representatives in the U.S. and the Vatican will also investigate

WCCO Radio Newsroom
September 11, 2019 - 10:02 am
MSP archbishop Bernerd Hebda

Entercom

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The Archbishop of St. Paul and Minneapolis says he has opened an investigation into allegations that the bishop of Crookston, MN interfered with investigations into clerical sexual misconduct.

In a statement, Archbishop Bernard Hebda says the investigation targets Bishop Michael Hoeppner of the Crookston diocese in northwestern Minnesota, and that law enforcement has been informed of the allegations. He gave no further specifics.

Hebda says information will be forwarded to the Pope’s representatives in the U.S. and to the Vatican for a determination on whether further steps are needed.

In an additional statement to the  Catholic News Agency, which broke the story, Hebda said he had appointed qualified "lay persons" to assist with the internal investigation. 

"All involved in this investigation have been encouraged to respond to the investigators’ requests and provide accurate information so that the truth in this matter may become clear," the statement reads. 

Former Bureau of Criminal Apprehension chief Tim O’Malley will lead the investigation.

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