Former Kansas City police chief Jim Corwin has agreed to lead a local Catholic board that investigates allegations of child sexual abuse within the Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph.
Corwin said he was humbled to take the position.
“This is both an honor and an obligation,” he said in a written statement. “I believe that my service will be worthy work for our community.”
The diocese’s seven-member Independent Review Board investigates allegations of sexual abuse and misconduct against priests and deacons and makes recommendations to the bishop as to whether the subject should be retained in the ministry or removed.
Bishop Robert Finn said in the written announcement that the local Catholic community would “be greatly enriched” by Corwin’s service on the board.
“A hallmark of Chief Corwin’s career in law enforcement was his ability to build community relationships,” Finn said.
Corwin, a Presbyterian, retired from the Police Department in September after 32 years of service.
He replaces Jim Caccamo, a Catholic who announced his resignation from the board earlier this month, saying that the turmoil of the past year had “exhausted” him.
Finn came under fire last year for his handling of the case of the Rev. Shawn Ratigan, who has been charged in state and federal courts with possession of child pornography. A grand jury in October indicted Finn and the diocese on misdemeanor counts of failing to report suspected child abuse in the case.
When Ratigan was arrested, Caccamo complained that his review board had been told nothing about the priest’s problems.