Monsignor William Lynn is staying in jail.
A judge this morning denied Lynn’s request to be freed on bail. Lynn is the first member of the nation’s Roman Catholic hierarchy to be convicted and sentenced to prison for shielding a pedophile priest.
Lynn has been behind bars at the Curran Fromhold Correctional Facility since he was found guilty on June 22 after a three-month trial. Common Pleas Court Judge M. Teresa Sarmina later sentenced him to three to six years in prison.
The monsignor’s attorneys have said they will appeal.
Lynn, once the Archdiocese of Philadelphia’s secretary for clergy, was convicted of one count of child endangerment because he assigned a priest he believed to be a pedophile to live in the Northeast’s St. Jerome parish, where he subsequently molested a 10-year-old altar boy.
That priest, Edward Avery, was to be tried with Lynn and the Rev. James Brennan, but pleaded guilty to sexual abuse charges in March. Avery, who is defrocked, was sentenced to two and a half to five years imprisonment.
Before the trial began March 26, Lynn’s attorneys maintained the monsignor couldn’t be charged with child endangerment because he didn’t supervise children, and during the trial, they said Lynn never had the power to reassign priests, so couldn’t be held accountable for Avery’s criminal acts.
Jurors were unable to make a decision on attempted rape and child endangerment charges against Brennan. Prosecutors will retry him. A trial date will be decided Aug. 14. ••
Reporter John Loftus can be reached at 215-354-3110 or firstname.lastname@example.org