Former Danbury Priest Arraigned After Accusations of Sexual Assault
A priest who formerly served at a local parish has been accused of sexually assaulting a minor.
Bishop Frank Caggiano of the Diocese of Bridgeport released a statement on December 6, regarding the allegations that 51-year-old Rev. Jaime Marin-Cardona had engaged in the sexual abuse of a minor.
After receiving a concerned letter from members of St. Mary's Parish, detailing their suspicion of Marin-Cardona's sexual misconduct, the Diocese immediately placed him on administrative leave on December 11 and prohibited him from any contact with the parish, according to Patch. At around the same time as the letter, the former priest of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Danbury was also allegedly seen in a car with a teenage boy, a violation of the church's policies.
The Diocese then reported these allegations to the Department of Children and Families and the Danbury police, thus launching an investigation that would later lead to Marin-Cardona turning himself in. Thankfully, and unlike the DCF who dismissed the initial investigation due to the fact that the victim and the victim's parents indicated that no abuse had occured, the Danbury police continued their investigation after an interview of the victim was conducted, during which no details of misconduct were given. The police continued their research.
According to the Diocese of Bridgeport's January 6th press release, Marin-Cardona turned himself in on January 3 upon learning there was a warrant for his arrest.
On January 6, he was arraigned in court for three counts of sexual assault in the 4th degree and three counts of risk of injury to a minor. According to The Norwalk Hour, the Rev. remains in police custody on a $500,000 bond until a plea hearing on January 31. The allegations were reportedly from incidents that occurred in 2014 and 2016.
The tone of Bishop Caggiano's January 6 press release is sincere and apologetic: "I wish again to offer my profound and heartfelt apology to all who have suffered abuse, and to all those who have lost a sense of trust or feel betrayed by the Church."
The Diocese ultimately urges its members to maintain a mindset of hope and reconciliation despite this sinful development.