Archbishop Nienstedt Resumes Duties After No Charges in Alleged Groping Incident

Updated: 03/11/2014 5:30 PM
Created: 03/11/2014 4:11 PM
By: Megan Stewart

Attorneys for Ramsey County have decided not to file charges against Archbishop John Nienstedt in connection to an alleged groping incident that was reported last December.

The decision has led to Nienstedt resuming his public ministry duties after he stepped aside the day after the report was filed, the archdiocese announced Tuesday.

The report, filed Dec. 16, 2013, alleged Nienstedt touched the rear end of a child with his hand in May 2009 while taking a group picture during the child's confirmation.

The alleged victim, who was a minor at the time, told his mom about the incident after the ceremony, the report said.

The mother later told a priest, who then reported it to the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis, the report said.

When interviewed by police after the report was filed, the victim, who is now a grown man, said while he thought the situation was "creepy," he did not believe it was significant and was concerned about the attention the incident was receiving.

Nienstedt, 66, said he did not recall the incident, but that the allegations were "absolutely and entirely false."

The Ramsey County Attorney's Office said there was insufficient information to charge Nienstedt based on their investigations.

The broader investigation of child sex abuse allegations within the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis remains active and ongoing, the office said.

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