Franciscan friar accused of abuse in 2 states, commits suicide

    Police say a Franciscan friar accused of sexual abusing students at schools in two states killed himself at a western Pennsylvania monastery.

    Blair Township police Chief Roger White tells the Associated Press an autopsy by the county coroner confirmed that 62-year-old Brother Stephen Baker died of a self-inflicted knife wound.

    White said officers were called to St. Bernardine Monastery in Hollidaysburg on Saturday morning after another resident had found Baker not breathing.

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    Baker was named last week in legal settlements with 11 men who alleged he sexually abused them at a northeast Ohio school three decades ago. A Pennsylvania school said it has also received molestation allegations involving Baker.

    Youngstown Bishop George Murray called for prayers for abuse victims, Baker’s family “and the repose of his soul.”

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