Louisiana priest Joseph P. Bowers, the priest charged with assaulting two teenagers in a church bathroom in Louisiana in February, has resigned, according to his attorney.
Bowers, 46, resigned Monday from the Diocese of New Orleans, where he served for 14 years, his lawyer, William J. Rucker, said in a statement.
The diocese said in an emailed statement that it was “aware of his resignation and is deeply saddened by it.”
“The Diocese will work with the parish to find a suitable successor and the Diocesan Board of Trustees to appoint a successor.”
Bowers has faced a number of sexual abuse allegations, including a claim that he sexually abused boys and girls as young as 7.
In addition to allegations of sexual assault, Bowers has been accused of molesting two other minors, according the Diacrystal news site.
The news site said that in January, the U.S. Department of Education and the U,S.
Attorney’s Office in New Orleans said they were investigating the allegations of abuse by Bowers.
Bower, who has been on probation for two years, was arrested in Louisiana last year.
Bower had been on leave since he was charged, but has been a full-time employee at the parish since the arrest.
Bridges, who was previously the president of the Louisiana chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics, was removed from his post and suspended by the diocese in September.
The diocese has apologized to victims and the victims’ families, and Bowers is expected to attend a meeting with victims’ advocates in Louisiana next week, Rucker said.
Bates, the former parishioner, was charged with two counts of felony aggravated assault in the incident, and is being held in the Orleans Parish Prison on $1 million bond.