LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) — A former Ann Arbor Catholic priest will serve one year in jail and five years probation after pleading guilty to sexual conduct charges, Attorney General Dana Nessel announced Thursday.
Former priest Timothy Crowley, 74, pled guilty in August to two counts of second-degree criminal sexual conduct. In addition to the one year at Washtenaw County Jail and the five years’ probation, Judge Patrick Conklin in the 22nd Circuit Court sentenced Crowley to receive sex offender treatment and to register as a sex offender for life.
Crowley, a former priest at St. Thomas Rectory in Ann Arbor, was arrested in 2019 in Tempe, Arizona, according to the AG. The state of Michigan originally charged him with four felony counts of first-degree CSC and four felony counts of second-degree CSC, for his alleged crimes against one victim.
A statement from the Diocese of Lansing in August said it welcomed Crowley’s conviction. “Crowley’s crimes were a gross betrayal of the trust placed in him by the Catholic community within the Diocese of Lansing and, especially, of those families and young people entrusted to his pastoral care,” said David Kerr, Director of Communications for the Diocese of Lansing, in a statement following Crowley’s conviction in August 2023.
Crowley is the ninth clergyman whom the AG’s clergy abuse investigation team has convicted, and his sentencing marks the conclusion of the active clergy abuse prosecutions in Michigan. The AG has criminally charged 11 priests throughout Michigan. Two of the charged priests are awaiting extradition from India.
The first allegations of sexual abuse of a minor were made against Crowley in 1993, according to the Diocese of Lansing. The diocese said it shared information about Crowley with the Washtenaw County Prosecutor’s Office in 2003, but that charges could not be filed because of the statute of limitations. The church dismissed Crowley from the priesthood in 2015, according to a statement from the diocese.
In October 2018, officials from Michigan State Police, other law enforcement agencies and the AG executed search warrants at Michigan’s seven Catholic dioceses. They seized 220 boxes of paper documents and more than 3.5 million digital documents. In addition, the clergy abuse tip line has generated 1,085 tips related to abuse.