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St. Louis Archbishop ‘Not Sure’ Whether He Knew Child Sex Abuse Was a Crime

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Photo: Jerry Naunheim Jr./St. Louis Archdiocese

Photo: Jerry Naunheim Jr./St. Louis Archdiocese

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ST. PAUL, Minn. (KMOX/AP) - The head of the Archdiocese of St. Louis said under oath he couldn’t recall details about how he handled allegations of abuse against a Minnesota priest years ago.

But Archbishop Robert Carlson did say he never went to authorities after that priest admitted in 1984 that he engaged in criminal sexual contact with a minor.

Carlson was deposed last month in a case against the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis, where Carlson served for years and had a role in investigating allegations of abuse from 1979 to 1994.

When asked if he knew it was a crime for an adult to engage in sex with a child, the Archbishop says, “I’m not sure whether I knew it was a crime or not. I understand today it’s a crime.”

He says he’s also not sure when he did discern that it was a crime for an adult to engage in sex with a child.

Messages left with the St. Louis archdiocese weren’t immediately returned.

Carlson left Minnesota in 1994 and served as bishop in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, and Saginaw, Michigan, before becoming St. Louis archbishop in 2009.

(TM and © Copyright 2014 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2014 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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