A former Michigan priest has been sentenced to a year in jail after pleading guilty to sexually abusing an altar boy more than three decades ago.
A Washtenaw County judge sentenced Timothy Crowley, who must also serve five years of probation, on Wednesday, The Ann Arbor News reported.
Crowley, 74, pleaded guilty in August to two felony counts of second-degree criminal sexual conduct under a plea agreement that dismissed two counts of first-degree criminal sexual conduct.
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He was charged for sexual conduct with a youth alleged to have taken place between 1986 and 1990 at Jackson’s St. Mary Star of the Sea Catholic Church, Hillsdale’s St. Anthony Catholic Church and Ann Arbor’s St. Thomas the Apostle Catholic Church.
The victim testified that he was a 10-year-old altar boy for Crowley in 1982 at St. Mary’s in Jackson when his family encouraged him to spend time with the priest because they believed he was a good role model.
While spending time with Crowley, the priest would touch him slightly while encouraging him to sleep in bed together, adding “it was normal and natural,” the victim previously testified.
After the victim’s family contacted an attorney in 1993, the Lansing Diocese paid $200,000 to Crowley’s accuser. Crowley was defrocked in 2015.
Previous charges in the case were dismissed in October 2019 after a judge found they failed to abide by the alleged crime’s then six-year statute of limitations. State prosecutors appealed that decision and an appeals court agreed to reinstate four of the eight sexual misconduct charges Crowley originally faced.