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Jury in Philadelphia Clergy Sex Abuse Trial Is Told of Defendant's Suicide Attempt

By Tony Hanson

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) -- There was dramatic testimony today in the trial of a priest and former lay teacher charged with sexually assaulting the same grade-school altar boy in 1999 and 2000 (see related stories).

There was testimony today that defendant Bernard Shero tried to commit suicide in 2011, on the morning he was supposed to surrender to face charges he sexually assaulted the boy, then 11 years old, in 2000.   In a note, Shero had apologized to his parents and told them he didn't think he had "much of a choice here" and he thinks they know why.

But he went on to say he'd be dragged though the mud whether he is innocent or guilty.

Engelhardt, Charles F thumb
(Charles Engelhardt)

In other testimony, a detective has testified that the alleged victim gave to him a significantly different version of the alleged abuse by Father Charles Engelhardt than the alleged victim later gave to the grand jury and the jury in this case.

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