CHARLESTON—A lawsuit was filed in State Court in Nassau County, New York, earlier today, Aug. 14, in which an allegation was made that Most Reverend Robert E. Guglielmone, Bishop of Charleston, sexually abused a minor in 1978 or 1979. At the time, he was serving as a priest at St. Martin of Tours Catholic Church in Amityville, New York, in the Diocese of Rockville Centre.
The Diocese of Charleston released the following statement: “The plaintiff’s abuse allegation was not determined to be credible when it was made and information regarding the accusation was provided to law enforcement. The Vatican was informed of the allegation and Bishop Guglielmone is cooperating fully with a thorough ongoing investigation initiated at the request of the Vatican.”
The diocese stated that “Bishop Guglielmone adamantly denies the plaintiff’s allegation of abuse and looks forward to proving his innocence of this baseless accusation.”
“I offer my prayers daily for those whose lives have been hurt or devastated by the actions of a member of the clergy or by any other persons, especially all abused children and other vulnerable persons,” Bishop Guglielmone stated in the press release. “It is particularly tragic when the abuse is at the hands of a priest in whom their spiritual care and well-being has been entrusted.”
The diocese’s vicars general, Msgrs. Richard D. Harris and D. Anthony Droze, declared their support of the bishop, stating that he has been a trusted leader for more than 10 years and that they have the utmost faith in his truthfulness and in his innocence.