Former priest pleads guilty to fondling 2 altar boys at Bucks County church

DOYLESTOWN, Pa. (KYW Newsradio) — A 74-year-old former priest is on his way to state prison after pleading guilty to fondling two altar boys at a Bucks County church. 

Francis Trauger pleaded guilty to touching the two boys through their clothes at St. Michael the Archangel Church in Tullytown. 

It happened during the robing process. One in 2000, when the boy was in middle school, another in 1996 when the boy was 12.

One of the victims recorded a statement that was played in court, saying he bottled up his emotions, drank and used drugs excessively over the years, and that he hates Trauger for what he did to him.

Defense attorney Brian McVan said while Trauger “went astray” and did some “horrible things,” in his overall balance of life, “he did a lot of good.”

But Bucks County Judge Jeffrey Finley, handing down the agreed upon sentence of 1.5 to three years in prison, told Trauger, “any good you did, you tore down, you destroyed.”

Trauger was removed from the priesthood in 2003 when allegations against him first surfaced. 

A spokesman for the Philadelphia Archdiocese said when they found out about these accusations in August 2018, they immediately turned them over to law enforcement.