Charges against priest dropped

Charges of embezzlement against Fr. Richard Fritz have been dismissed in St. Joseph County Circuit Court.
Fritz was accused of stealing more than $100,000 from Catholic Diocese of Kalamazoo while serving as pastor for St. Mary’s in Bronson and St. Barbara’s in Colon.
St. Joseph County Prosecutor John McDonough would not comment on his decision to request charges be dismissed other than to release his motion filed in court. It stated he was satisfied with the conversation that Fritz had with Bishop Bradley and how the church has chosen to move forward and begin to heal from the incident.
The Diocese of Kalamazoo last October turned over to Michigan State Police findings from an independent forensic audit involving both churches because of what appeared to be questionable financial transactions and practices.
During a six-year period, the audit raised questions about checks in the amount of more than $213,000 allegedly written and cashed by the priest.

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