Louisville priest James Schook found guilty of sexual abuse
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- A Louisville priest on trial for sexual abuse has been found guilty on sodomy charges.
The jury convicted Louisville priest Reverend James Schook on three counts of sodomy and one count of indecent or immoral practices with another, all involving one victim.
"Instruction number four for sodomy, we the jury find the defendant James Schook guilty under instruction number four bottom line signature, is that your verdict?" said Judge Mitch Perry, reading one of the verdicts.
Jurors got the case just before 2 p.m. Wednesday after closing arguments concluded.
LMPD detective Rebecca Sanders was the first and only witness to take the stand Wednesday.
Schook was found not guilty of three other counts, including one that involved a separate alleged victim, Michael Stansbury.
"I am very satisfied that he has been found guilty of so many charges," said Stansbury, who claims he was molested as a teenager back in the 70s.
"What was going through your mind when the jury said guilty?" asked WDRB's Ryan Cummings.
"Wonderful! I thought that it was the right decision, I mean, the jury's done their job," he replied.
Schook's case goes back several years. The trial was delayed repeated because of his terminal skin cancer.
A doctor, however, found Schook fit to stand trial.
"I'm sorry he has cancer, but he didn't have cancer back when he was molesting people back then in the 70s," Stansbury said.
As Schook came out of the courtroom Wednesday, walker in hand, he quietly said "no comment."
"I have seen no emotion out of him, but I do believe in the sentencing phase, it'll be a whole different picture," Stansbury said.
The jury will reconvene at 10 a.m. Thursday morning to hear more testimony before it recommends a sentence to the judge. The maximum sentence is 25 years.
The defense didn't call a single witness to the stand in the case, hoping the jury would simply take into account that the witnesses against Schook waited several decades to come forward with abuse allegations, and that at least one may be in it for the money.
Stansbury says the main reason he ended up coming forward 38 years later, was so that Schook would not hurt anyone else.
"And he will have these charges on his for the rest of his life."
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