Reverend Michael Pfleger Says He is Innocent of Sexual Abuse Allegations After State Completes Investigation of Pastor of St. Sabina
Reverend Michael Pfleger, in his first public statement in weeks, declared his innocence again on Wednesday as the Department of Children and Family Services apparently reached a conclusion on its investigation into allegations of children could currently be in danger.
In a pair of social media posts, Pfleger, who stepped down as pastor of St. Church’s “fake.”
“When this is over, what I hope (sic) will be soon, I will have a lot more to say,” wrote Pfleger, who, in another post, thanked several organizations and individuals who expressed their support for St Priest Sabina. “… I pray [Chicago] The archdiocese will quickly allow my return to the ministry.
Since the Archdiocese has now issued a statement saying I can comment on my innocence … let me be clear and repeat what my lawyers said at the start. I am innocent of these false alligations. When this is over I hope that soon I will have a lot more to say
– Bro. Michael Pfleger (@MichaelPfleger) February 24, 2021
Pfleger’s comments come after DCFS sent letters regarding the outcome of its investigation into Pfleger.
Although the law does not authorize the DCFS to investigate allegations of child abuse or neglect made by an adult victim, DCFS spokesperson Bill McCaffrey said the DCFS could determine whether there is had a current minor victim.
When an investigation is unfounded, the DCFS sends a letter to the mandated rapporteur, in this case the archdiocese, informing him of the results of the investigation and giving him time to respond, and after 20 days, the DCFS then sends a letter to the alleged perpetrator. with the results of the investigation.
McCaffrey confirmed that letters were sent to the Archdiocese on February 4 and Pfleger on February 24, but did not want to comment on the contents of the letters. However, the Archdiocese and Pfleger’s lawyer Jim Figliulo both said they never received a letter from DCFS adult chat.
“We have been told [Tuesday], by a DCFS official in Springfield, that a determination letter was not in their system, indicating that it had not been generated, let alone mailed, ”the Archdiocese said in a statement . “DCFS has confirmed that it will not provide an electronic copy of the letter and that we will have to wait for it to arrive via the US Postal Service.”
Figliulo again said the brothers’ claims were “not true”.
Meanwhile, victims’ attorney Eugene Hollander said he “wouldn’t care” about the DCFS findings since none of his brothers made statements to the department.
“There really wasn’t much on the DCFS file regarding their unsubstantiated allegations,” Hollander said. “Of course, I haven’t seen their file, but it must be a fairly straightforward file because they didn’t have any information directly from my customers.”
The archdiocese said the DCFS was not directly investigating the veracity of the allegations against Pfleger.
“We have been told that in light of the allegations, the DCFS is investigating whether there is a ‘risk of harm’ to the children,” the Archdiocese’s statement read. “Depending on the content of the letter we ultimately receive from DCFS, there may be no conclusion about guilt or innocence in this case.”
Figliulo said the archdiocese’s lengthy statement was “difficult to follow.”
“The Archdiocese has said it is awaiting the conclusion of the DCFS investigation. If they now say it doesn’t mean anything, it’s confusing, ”Figliulo said.
The Archdiocese and the Chicago Police Department are conducting their own independent investigations into the allegations, which continue.
Pfleger has not been charged with any crime.
Earlier Wednesday, a group of about 100 gathered outside the Archdiocese of Chicago headquarters and called for Pfleger’s reinstatement.
State Senator Jacqueline Collins, a member of Sainte-Sabine, urged the Archdiocese to act quickly to make a decision on the case and share it publicly.
“It is time for the Archdiocese to speed up the process and bring about a renewal, rebirth and restoration of Fr. Pfleger’s good reputation, dignity and decency,” said Collins. “Time is running out, because in the court of public opinion, time becomes the jury.”
In response to allegations allegedly made during the protest, the Archdiocese denied concocting a ruse to impeach Pfleger and said every allegation of clergy misconduct was taken seriously and subjected to the same process.
“The Church has been accused, sometimes rightly, of not taking the accusations seriously, of conducting superficial investigations and of prematurely re-establishing priests who misbehave in the ministry,” the statement said. “We are convinced that the procedures for handling these cases, developed and improved over the years, are working. They should be followed by all organizations that care for and educate young people. It is ironic that we are now accused of taking too long to review allegations because a priest is important and well regarded.
“Thirty years spent at the forefront of the fight against child abuse, which unfortunately continues in today’s society, has taught us that these issues take the time it takes to come to a conclusion. conclusion. We intend to continue working on all cases brought before us to this end, always prioritizing the protection and healing of victims.