Local priest must register as sex offender after plea in altar boy’s abuse case

FAIRCHANCE, Pa. — A priest has pleaded no contest to repeatedly assaulting an 11-year-old altar boy in Fayette County, Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro announced Monday.

The assaults by Andrew Kawecki started in 2004 and continued until the boy, who was an altar server at Sts. Cyril and Methodius Church in Fairchance, was 14 years old.

Kawecki was charged in August 2020 after the victim came forward to investigators, telling them that Kawecki forced sexual encounters in the back room of the church where Kawecki prepared for services.

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After charges were filed in that case, another person came forward with similar allegations of abuse. However, that abuse happened outside the statute of limitations, according to Shapiro’s office.

Kawecki had been identified following the release of the report following a grand jury investigation on clergy sexual abuse in 2018, but he was not named within the report, Shapiro’s office said.

Kawecki’s plea to indecent assault requires him to register as a sex offender for 10 years under Megan’s Law.