Bessemer residents surprised by priest abuse allegations

St. Anthony's Parish in Bessemer

BESSEMER, Pa. (WKBN) – The sexual abuse allegations against Fr. John Fitzgerald is waking up the town of Bessemer, where Fitzgerald was a priest at St. Anthony’s Church.

Fitzgerald was at St. Anthony’s in the 1990’s and some residents of Bessemer said they find the allegations surprising. Most describe the priest as a nice guy and find the allegations hard to believe.

The Lawrence County District Attorney and the Catholic Diocese of Pittsburgh are investigating the sexual abuse allegations. The Allegheny County District Attorney also is involved because Fitzgerald served as pastor for Our Lady of Peace in Beaver County.

“I will tell you this. I was really surprised when I read it in the paper. And I don’t believe any of these allegations,” Jim Pezzulo of Bessemer said.


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