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Priest accused of ‘inappropriate contact’ with minor, adults

PURCELLVILLE (AP) The Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office says a Catholic priest in Purcellville is accused of inappropriate contact with a minor and adults.

The Catholic Diocese of Arlington has placed Father Ronald S. Escalante on leave pending an investigation by the sheriff’s office, news outlets reported. A Dec. 7 diocese release said the Saint Francis de Sales Church pastor is accused of “boundary violations involving a minor and adults” that go against its clergy code of conduct.

Sheriff’s spokesman Kraig Troxell says the diocese reported the possible “inappropriate contact” to authorities. WUSA-TV reports the sheriff’s office received the diocese’s report Nov. 21. It’s unclear why Escalante was suspended nearly three weeks later.

The diocese release says Escalante denies the allegations, which are being considered by the Diocesan Review Board.

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