Father James McGonegal pleads not guilty to sex charge - 19 Action News|Cleveland, OH|News, Weather, Sports

Catholic priest accused of trying to pay for sex pleads not guilty

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James McGonegal in court James McGonegal in court
CLEVELAND, OH (WOIO) -

A Cleveland pastor accused of trying to pay for sex was in court on Tuesday morning. 

Father James McGonegal, a priest of St. Ignatius of Antioch Church on Lorain Avenue in Cleveland, is charged with one count of soliciting sex after testing positive for HIV.

Father McGonegal pleaded not guilty to the charge, and remains free on bond.

McGonegal, 68, is currently on leave amid the allegations he tried to pay $50 to an undercover park ranger for sex last week at Edgewater Park. 

The Cleveland Diocese issued a short statement saying, "The Diocese has a practice of cooperating with civil authorities in these kinds of matters and will do in this matter."  

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