The warning signs of “Monsignor Meth”

The warning signs of “Monsignor Meth” January 23, 2013

The Connecticut Post has details:

Looking back there were the usual warning signs, those nagging red flags. In Monsignor Kevin Wallin‘s case, there was the weight loss, the change in his usually meticulous appearance and his erratic behavior that concerned his parishioners and others, including church officials.

“He just didn’t look right; he didn’t seem the same,” said Brian Wallace, spokesman for the Diocese of Bridgeport.

Then came the talk about inappropriate sexual behavior by Wallin, then pastor at St. Augustine’s Church. “We became aware that he was acting out sexually — with men — in the church rectory,” said Wallace.

The main concern was to rule out what Wallin, 61, was doing was criminal, in particular that he was doing anything inappropriate with children.

“We determined that wasn’t the case,” Wallace said. “There’s a difference between sin and crime. We don’t out people for their sins.”

Since his sexual behavior was deemed “not fitting for a priest,” Wallin was asked to, and did, resign in June 2011, just shortly after the concerns were brought to the attention of the Diocese, he said.

After Wallin left, a bag with “sex paraphernalia” was found in his room, Wallace said.

He said their main concern was to “protect the parish — to make sure (Wallin’s) behavior didn’t hurt anyone.” He added that, at that time, there was no indication of drug use by Wallin, or that he was cross-dressing.

The Diocese wouldn’t learn about those allegations until after Wallin’s arrest earlier this month on charges of participating in the conspiracy to sell crystal methamphetamine, as well as dealing the drug.

Read more. 

Meantime, the priest appeared in court yesterday:

On Tuesday, the 61-year-old Wallin who once advised two Bridgeport Diocese bishops, appeared in U.S. District Court before Magistrate Thomas P. Smith to plead not guilty to seven federal charges: participating in a conspiracy to distribute crystal meth and making six sales to an undercover police officer.

“My gosh, Father, for your first involvement in the criminal justice system, you picked a real doozy,” Smith told Wallin, who was not wearing his priestly garb, but sported an orange jump suit at least two sizes too big.

“The drug involved is very deadly. It has the capacity of destroying a person’s mind … it is so much worse than heroin … than cocaine.”

The offenses carry a mandatory 10-year prison term with a maximum of life upon conviction, Caruso said.

“On the scale of federal drug offenses this is about as serious as it gets,” he said. “Our evidence is very, very strong. There were six controlled purchases by an undercover police officer … a wiretap for 30 days in which the nature of the calls is very explicit and left little to the imagination in terms of quantity and dollar amounts.”

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