Another day, Another scandal in Newchurch…
Better that only a few Catholics should be left, staunch and sincere in their religion, than that they should, remaining many, desire as it were, to be in collusion with the Church’s enemies and in conformity with the open foes of our faith. – St. Peter Canisius
“Listen, you Do-Nothing superiors of clerics and priests! Listen, and even though you feel sure of yourselves, tremble at the thought that you are the partners in the guilt of others; those, I mean, who wink at the sins of their subjects that need correction and who by ill-considered silence allow them license to sin. Listen, I say, and be shrewd enough to understand that all of you alike are deserving of death, that is, not only do such things, but also they who approve of those who practice them.” – St. Peter Damien
Former Kentucky Catholic priest who viewed child porn on church computers and ‘took hundreds of photos of his students in erotic poses’ sentenced to THREE years in prison
Stephen Pohl, 57, pleaded guilty to accessing images of nude underage boys on computers at St Margaret Mary’s Catholic Church in Louisville
Pohl was not charged for taking photos of his students, who were clothed
But the federal investigation began after a parent’s 10-year-old son said Pohl had asked him to pose for ‘weird photographs’
One pose included the boy putting his hands on his knees and spreading his legs apart, the affidavit states
Investigators found 150 images of Pohl’s students during a search
A former Kentucky Catholic priest accused of snapping hundreds of inappropriate photos of his students has been sentenced to nearly three years in prison for viewing child pornography.
Stephen Pohl, 57, pleaded guilty in January to accessing pornographic images of nude underage boys on computers at St Margaret Mary Catholic Church’s office and rectory in Louisville. Pohl was not charged for taking photographs of his parish students, who were all fully clothed. But porn was discovered on his computer after concerned parents reported him to police.
A 10-year-old St Margaret Mary student told his mother that ‘Father Steve’ had asked to pose for ‘weird photographs’ on his cell phone while he was attending an after-school club.
Stephen Pohl, 57, was sentenced to nearly three years in jail after he pleaded guilty to accessing pornographic images of nude underage boys on computers at St Margaret Mary’s Church in Louisville, Kentucky. Pohl ordered the young boy to pose with his hands on his knees and spread his legs apart, according to the affidavit.
The boy’s parents confronted the priest when they saw him out shopping in Louisville and asked to see the pictures on his phone.
When Pohl handed it over, the parents found ‘several photos of other young boys posed in the same manner as their son’, the affidavit states.
Investigators discovered that the pornographic images, which did not feature any children from St Mary Margaret, were never downloaded to the computer. Forensic analysis of the computer’s hard drives were able to detect the images Pohl viewed online, according to The Courier-Journal.
More than 150 photos of Pohl’s clothed students students, some of which constituted child erotica, were also discovered during the search, a criminal complaint states.
The US Attorney’s office said students featured in the photographs are being identified and their parents are being contacted.
Pohl originally pleaded not guilty after his office was searched and he was arrested in August.
He later told authorities that some items on his computer ‘probably should not be there‘ and admitted he had visited ‘inappropriate’ websites, a detective said in an affidavit. The Archdiocese of Louisville placed Pohl, who was hired in 1985 and served at five churches in the area, on administrative leave after his office was searched. He resigned soon after. Pohl was sentenced to 33 months in federal prison on Tuesday and, under the terms of the plea agreement, will have to register as a sex offender following his release.
He will also be supervised by the US Probation and Pretrial Services for the rest of his life.
Pohl, who has been on house arrest at his mother’s home while awaiting trial, surrendered to US Marshals following his sentencing. The former priest said in court that he is currently working with a psychologist, who has helped him understand ‘what is happening here’. The Archdiocese of Louisville released a statement Monday saying it welcomed the news that ‘Father Pohl is pleading guilty and accepting responsibility for his actions’.
But soon the archdiocese might be facing its own day in court.
Pohl was not charged for taking photographs of his parish students, who were all fully clothed. But investigators noted that some of the pictures constituted child erotic (pictured is the church’s parish school)
Parents of another boy who was allegedly photographed by Pohl filed a suit against the Archdiocese of Louisville on Tuesday.
Christeena and Richard Gallahue Jr have claimed Pohl’s behavior was ‘so open and obvious’ that the archdiocese knew or should have known he was taking inappropriate photos of children for decades.
The couple claim that Christeena came upon Pohl photographing her son and daughter, then 7 and 5, on the parish steps one day as she was picking her children up from school.
Christeena claims Pohl was nervous when he saw her and told her he would send a copy of the pictures, but never did.
The mother claims she then saw Pohl taking pictures alone with another boy on the same steps at a Boy Scout banquet at a church, and once again appeared nervous when he saw her.
They reported the incident with Pohl and their son, who they said confirmed the priest had asked him to pose in unusual positions for pictures, to police after he was arrested. The Gallahues are seeking damages for emotional stress, saying their son soon stopped wanting to go to school and has since been sent to counseling.
The Archdiocese of Louisville paid $25.7m in 2003 to 243 people who were molested as children in Catholic schools and charges, at the time the largest an archdiocese paid itself.
Another enemy within
‘Catholic priest’ is caught on video snorting cocaine in a room full of Nazi memorabilia… ‘Father’ Stephen Crossan filmed taking cocaine at party on church grounds.