Published January 14, 2013
PHILADELPHIA – A defense lawyer for a priest charged with sexually assaulting an altar boy says the Philadelphia accuser has never told the same story twice.
Defense lawyer Michael McGovern represents the Rev. Charles Engelhardt, who went on trial Monday along with former teacher Bernard Shero.
McGovern says people now look at priests in clerical collars and "see a bull's-eye" — because they hope to get money by suing the church.
Engelhardt and Shero are charged with sexually assaulting the now 24-year-old man at St. Jerome's Parish in northeast Philadelphia in 1999. They have pleaded not guilty.
Prosecutors say the accuser's story will be corroborated by a defrocked priest.
McGovern says the accuser has led a life damaged by drug addiction and petty crimes, and can't be believed.