St. Louis Priest Charles Manning Acquitted Of Sex Assault, Guilty Of Giving Boy Pot, Alcohol

Categories: Crime, News

Charles Manning.
Charles Manning, who was ordained as a St. Louis priest in 1997, has been acquitted of sexually assaulting a fifteen-year-old boy, but a jury ruled that he was guilty of supplying the teen with marijuana and alcohol.

A jury reached its verdict last week in Colorado Springs, where Manning was transferred in 2007. The allegation of sexual abuse -- including claims that the now 78-year-old priest was behaving like a "jealous lover" toward the boy -- surfaced in January 2012, prompting a local police investigation and a period of leave for Manning.

Now, the priest is free on bond but could face up to six years in prison for the guilty conviction of contributing to the delinquency of a minor connected to the drug charges.

See also:
- LeRoy Valentine: Decades After First Alleged Abuse, St. Louis Priest Removed
- Parents Sue St. Louis Archdiocese Over Son's Alleged Rape, Suicide

Manning's case was notable locally in part because while the allegations were being investigated, he was allowed to return to St. Louis to live in a home for retired priests. That facility in the archdiocese's Shrewsbury campus has received attention in the past for housing accused priests -- in a neighborhood with children and day care centers.

"Moving a priest from point A to point B doesn't cure him," David Clohessy, executive director of the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, tells Daily RFT.

Of the jury's decision last week, Clohessy, based in St. Louis, says, "It's disappointing, but the glass here is half full. Most victims come forward with one goal in mind and that is to protect other kids.... Any other parent now is going to be much more reluctant to let their child be with Manning."

Charles Manning mugshot.

The Colorado Springs Gazette reports that the priest's attorneys had painted him as a "prime target for false allegations" during the five-day trial.

"We are happy that they held him accountable for what he did, not what he didn't do," his attorney told the paper.

Clohessy tells us, "I hope this victim is able to at least be relieved by the fact that this man has been found guilty in a court of law...and that's because of his courage."

According to Bishop Accountability, which documents these kinds of cases, from 1997 to 2007, Manning served in parishes in Glencoe, Bridgeton, St. Louis and Imperial.

Send feedback and tips to the author. Follow Sam Levin on Twitter at @SamTLevin.

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Chester Angel
Chester Angel

These are your leaders Catholics?!?! Whoa. Good fucking luck to each of you...

Dallas Keller
Dallas Keller

Maybe he's just a really cool priest like that, Pattie. Have you ever thought about....... Naw. Just messing with you. I totally agree.

Pattie Van Horn Murphy
Pattie Van Horn Murphy

Why in the hell would he get kids high if he was going to do something to them.. Geez.. Come on people..

ut_4_me topcommenter

I was never abused by a priest as a child, and I was around quite a few.  Was there something wrong with me????


Mr. Clohessey was misquoted. He actually said: Most victims come forward with one goal in mind: "TO FLEECE THE CATHOLIC CHURCH OF BIG WADS OF CASH." Take away the financial rewards in these cases and no one would ever sue again!


It takes a lot of courage to come forward and take action about being sexually abused as a child, and this brave victim is to be commended for doing just that.

We hope that Manning will be put in jail at least for what he has been convicted, and kept far away from children.

So let's hope that every person who may have knowledge or may have been harmed by Charles Robert Manning, will find the courage and strength to speak up and contact police, no matter how long ago the abuse happened. 
Silence is not an option anymore, it only hurts, and by speaking up there is a chance for healing, exposing the truth, and therefore protecting others.

Judy Jones, SNAP Midwest Associate Director, USA, 636-433-2511.,
"SNAP (The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests)

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