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Harrisburg Diocese identifies 71 alleged sex abusers, cites failure of bishops

Last Updated Aug 1, 2018 11:52 AM EDT

HARRISBURG, Pa. — The Roman Catholic diocese of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, has put out a list of 71 priests and others in the church accused of sexually abusing children in cases going back decades. Bishop Ron Gainer issued a public apology Wednesday for the abuse and said the church's bishops shared the blame, having responded inadequately to all the allegations.

As a result, the name of every bishop since 1947 will be removed from church facilities in the diocese.

The Harrisburg Diocese issued its findings just days after the state Supreme Court said a nearly 900-page grand jury report on sex abuse in six dioceses, including Harrisburg, can be made public later this month.

The diocese has also launched a website where people can reports child sex abuse. The website also offers resources for survivor assistance. 

Harrisburg is now the second diocese to get ahead of the grand jury report. The Erie Diocese in April identified more than 50 priests and lay people accused of child sexual abuse.

CBS Harrisburg affiliate WHP reports the release of the list comes a couple months two sisters, Patty Julius and Lara McKeever, filed a motion to try and overturn an agreement that was made as part of a settlement with several other of their sisters.