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Prosecutors reduce charge against Wisconsin priest

LA CROSSE, Wis. (AP) – Prosecutors have reduced a charge against a Wisconsin priest accused of groping a teenage girl while in La Crosse for a canon law conference.

The Rev. David Szatkowski had been charged with second-degree sexual assault of a child younger than 16 on Aug. 10. According to the complaint, he grabbed the girl’s breast outside a La Crosse Radisson in early August.

The La Crosse Tribune reports prosecutors reduced the charge Tuesday to fourth-degree sexual assault and disorderly conduct. Prosecutors are ethically prohibited from discussing the decision to reduce the charge.

Szatkowski had earned his doctorate by researching cases of children abused by religious leaders.

He has resigned from his position as an assistant professor at the Sacred Heart School of Theology in Franklin.

His next hearing is Oct. 7.

Information from: La Crosse Tribune, http://www.lacrossetribune.com

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