Police report gives new details in case involving area priest

MADISON (WKOW) -- There are new details about an interaction between Father William Nolan and a man who is accusing him of sexual misconduct. 

The man contacted the Diocese of Madison about the allegation on Monday. The accuser said the misconduct happened in 2009 and contacted the Janesville Police Department in 2015. 

Officers have yet to release the report to 27 News, but a friend of the accuser received a copy and shared a portion of it. 

Parts of the report reference Kevin Phelan, the Chancellor of the Diocese of Madison at the time. 

A portion of the report gives insight to an evening in which the alleged victim, who was an adult at the time, spent the night at Fr. Nolan's home. Phelan told detectives Nolan was trying to be friendly and supportive to the alleged victim, who sought companionship with Nolan. 

The report said in part, "...Nolan said he hadn't been aware of (alleged victim's) drinking issues," when Nolan invited him over to watch a football game. 

Phelan told detectives, Nolan, "...just allowed him to drink whatever he wanted. Eventually, he (Nolan) found that (alleged victim) was intoxicated and helped him to the guest room to sleep. He (Nolan) took him (alleged victim) to work in the morning and nothing unusual occurred." 

The police report indicated Nolan felt bad about what played out, but Nolan, "...maintained that nothing of a sexual nature occurred..."

Phelan told police Nolan did apologize to the alleged victim in a letter. That letter, "did not acknowledge guilt in any way," but it did apologize for the alleged victim becoming drunk at Nolan's home. 

The apology came at the suggestion of Phelan, according to the police report. 

It is still unclear when this particular encounter happened or if the alleged victim accused Fr. Nolan of sexual misconduct during this incident. However, the report shows the church was looking into this incident. 

27 News reached out separately to Phelan and the Diocese of Madison. Phelan has not responded, but the diocese did. 

A spokesman for the Diocese of Madison said in a statement late Tuesday, "We have not yet reviewed the Janesville Police Report from this incident, though we have requested a copy. Although we have not seen the report, we have confidence in their investigation and presumably their conclusion that there was no criminal matter to pursue based on what was reported at the time. We are willing to comment further, as we are able, after reviewing the report."

Janesville police said Nolan was not arrested or charged in the 2015 investigation.

The allegation made from the alleged victim is different from the child sex assault charges Nolan is facing in Jefferson County. 


For more on this story: http://www.wkow.com/story/38254385/2018/05/22/police-report-gives-new-details-to-interaction-between-priest-and-alleged-victim

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