Mo. Bishop Faces Bench Trial in Case Tied to Abuse
A Missouri judge will try the criminal case against the highest-ranking Catholic official in the U.S. to be charged with shielding an abusive priest, three weeks before it was to go before a jury.
Bishop Robert Finn and the Catholic Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph are charged with one count of failing to report suspected child abuse to the state.
Their trial was scheduled to start Sept. 24 in a case that carries a maximum penalty of a year in jail and a $1,000 fine.
Instead, a set of stipulated facts negotiated by both sides will be presented Thursday afternoon to Judge John M. Torrence.
Mike Mansur, a spokesman for Jackson County prosecutor Jean Peters Baker, said a verdict is expected by the end of the day.