New York priest sentenced to prison for altar boy rapes

By Reuters
Wednesday, February 16, 2011 16:43 EDT
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PITTSFIELD, Massachusetts (Reuters) – A New York man convicted of raping two altar boys while he was a Roman Catholic priest was sentenced to spend more than 20 years in prison on Wednesday.

Gary Mercure’s “ghastly, incomparable acts” inflicted immeasurable suffering on his victims, said Judge John Agostini in handing down the sentence in Berkshire, Mass. Superior Court in Pittsfield, Mass.

Mercure, 62, was convicted last Thursday of raping two altar boys during day trips to Massachusetts in the 1980s.

A jury found him guilty of three counts of forcible rape of a child and one count of indecent assault and battery on a child under 14.

He was sentenced to 20 to 25 years in prison for the rape charges and three to five years prison for the indecent assault and battery. He had faced the possibility of life in prison.

Prosecutors said Mercure, of Troy, New York, took the boys from his Queensbury, New York parish to remote locations in Massachusetts in 1986 and 1989 and sexually abused them.

Several men who were once altar boys from the parish testified they were repeatedly assaulted by Mercure in New York as well as Massachusetts.

Despite the vintage of the complaints, Massachusetts’ statute of limitations allowed Mercure to be prosecuted. He could not be tried in New York because too much time elapsed.

The silver-haired Mercure showed little reaction in court but smiled slightly as he was taken away in handcuffs.

He had a 34-year tenure in the Diocese of Albany, from 1974 to 2008, when the diocese removed him from the ministry.

He is technically still a priest, as only the Vatican has the official power to defrock a priest. Bishop of Albany Howard Hubbard said on Wednesday he will recommend to the Vatican that Mercure be defrocked now that he has been convicted.

(Editing by Ellen Wulfhorst and Greg McCune)

Mochila insert follows.

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  • Phil E. Drifter

    Get ready to reap what you sow?

    How about get ready to get sown like you reaped.

  • DesertSun59

    He’ll end up like Dahmer.

    Just wait.

  • Anonymous

    Wow, maybe there is a god………….

  • Anonymous

    In this case:

    Payback makes you someones’ bitch.

    To bad that there aren’t hundreds(thousands?) more child raping priests & cover-up bishops joining him.

  • Anonymous

    I can only hope that the good Father has to bunk with big bad Leroy Brown for the entire term of his sentence while a guest at the state penitentiary so that he can learn to appreciate what it means to do unto others as you would like others to do unto you.

  • Anonymous

    The Tea Turds would rather jail, disfigure and execute all “selfish” non-GOP hos who’ve used birth control or had abortions. Their fetal idolatry bills should all be called “Leave No Pedophile Priest Without a Child’s Behind Act”. The Dems are too spineless to nick name these mother-killing bills as such. Can you picture all the exploding heads if Pelosi denounced them as “Speaker Boner Wishes Childbirth Killed His Wife So He Can Bang More Lobbyists Act” or “Rep. Chris Smith Needs to Outsource More Jobs and Marital Sex to Thai Orphans Act”?

  • Anonymous

    Let us prey — err PRAY!

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_M5FLH5JI4ZXJM422NAD6M5SS7U wc fields

    the absolute lowest of the low. we had one of these deviants in my parish as a kid, and it took over thirty years for the law to finally catch up with him, while the church moved him around and hid his misdeeds. when, oh when, are people going to start hounding their representatives to end tax breaks for churches. just think folks…..your tax money is subsidizing these molesters.

  • DriveBy

    This is blatant criminalization of religion. The man is a Roman Catholic priest, for God’s sake! Thats what Roman Catholic priests do, for Christ’s sake!! What are you going to do next….hold Republicans accountable for their hypocrisy and double standards? Call out the US for it’s world-wide terrorist activities?
    I swear I don’t know what the world is coming to.

  • Anonymous

    Adoption record activists are claiming the Catholic Church won’t open its adoption records because its sheeple will find out that its priests hide their SECRET CHILDREN in church adoption mills.

  • Elim

    The last pedophile priest sentenced to hard time was beaten to death in prison.