Catholic Diocese says allegations of sexual misconduct by priest "not substantiated"
BATON ROUGE - The Catholic Diocese of Baton Rouge said an investigation into reports of sexual misconduct by a priest more than two decades ago could not be substantiated.
Officials within the church said they received a written allegation by a woman in her thirties, suggesting Fr. Eric Gyan had inappropriate contact with her in 1996 when she was a minor.
The woman said the alleged conduct occurred when Fr. Gyan was a pastor at St. John the Baptist Parish in Brusly. Gyan is currently a pastor at St. Theresa of Avila Parish in Gonzales.
Following the allegations, the diocese said it immediately notified civil officials and assured them of its full cooperation. The diocese said they also informed the person who made the allegation that she herself had the right to contact civil officials.
Independent, trained professionals were appointed by the diocese to conduct an investigaiton into the allegations. Following extensive interviews, a public appeal for information, and consultations with experts, the Independent Review Board received the investigative report and agreed the allegation against Fr. Gyan could not be substantiated.
The diocese's victim assistance coordinator spoke with the person making the allegation and offered assistance on behalf of the diocese.
The church said they found no reason to remove Fr. Gyan from his ministry at this time. They noted Fr. Gyan consistently cooperated in the investigation and categorically denied the allegation.
Bishop Robert Muench accepted the findings of the investigation and recommendations presented to him. He said Fr. Gyan continues to serve as a priest in good standing and of good reputation.
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