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Davenport priest reinstated to ministry

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Diocese officials say after evidence did not support the report, a Davenport priest accused of inappropriate contact will be restored to ministry.

Father Robert Harness, pastor of Holy Family Catholic Church in Davenport, was accused of inappropriately touching a minor in approximately 1990.  Diocese officials said someone reported Father Harness inappropriately touched a minor during a game that was played at a high school retreat.

“The game was played in full view of as many as 50 students and 10 adults.  None of the witnesses observed nor has anyone else reported any inappropriate behavior by Father Harness,” said Deacon David Montgomery of the Diocese of Davenport.

In keeping with the previously-established memorandum of understanding between the diocese and the Scott County Attorney, the diocese reported the allegation to the county attorney.  In keeping with the memorandum of understanding, the diocese was required to remove Fr. Harness from active ministry until the month-long investigation was completed.

The diocese received no other reports of inappropriate behavior involving Fr. Harness.

Father Harness has been reinstated as pastor of Holy Family Parish in Davenport effective immediately.

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