Former Wis priest is released from prison - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Former Wis priest is released from prison

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APPLETON, Wis. (AP) -- A former priest convicted of four counts of sexually assaulting children has been released from prison.

The Post-Crescent reports (http://post.cr/uYh4ag ) 84-year-old John Patrick Feeney served fewer than eight years of a 15-year sentence.

According to the state Department of Corrections, he reached his mandatory release date Nov. 1 and is living in an Appleton halfway house.

Feeney's 2004 convictions stemmed from the assaults of brothers Troy and Todd Merryfield when Feeney worked at St. Nicholas Catholic Church in Freedom in 1978.

The brothers filed a civil lawsuit in 2008 against the Diocese of Green Bay. That trial is set for May 14.

Peter Isely, of the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, says Feeney won't be able to again harm children because he's so well-known and will be under state supervision.

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Information from: The Post-Crescent, http://www.postcrescent.com

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

APNP-11-11-11 0941CST

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