2002-06-29 / Front Page

Priest Used Rockaway For Tryst With Boy

By Howard Schwach

Priest Used Rockaway
For Tryst With Boy
By Howard Schwach

A priest from Africa visiting a Sunnyside Gardens Church allegedly used Rockaway’s beach and boardwalk for an unwanted sexual encounter on Father’s Day, according to New York City Police sources and the Queens District Attorney.

The Reverend Peter Kiare, 41, who arrived from Kenya on a fundraising mission on June 11, reportedly took the unidentified 12-year-old boy on an outing to Rockaway by bus.

Police say that Kiare sexually abused the child "on the bus, at the beach at Beach 116 Street and on the boardwalk," for a period of four hours.

The priest allegedly groped and fondled the boy, police say.

"The defendant is alleged to have preyed upon a young boy placed in his care by repeatedly subjecting him to unwanted physical and sexual contact," says District Attorney Richard Brown. "What should have been a day of fun was twisted into a daylong nightmare."

According to DA Brown, on June 16, Kiarie "obtained parental permission to take the boy to Rockaway Beach. The defendant allegedly groped the boy at a grocery store shortly after they arrived in Rockaway and then subjected the child to a siege of sexually abusive attacks at a remote beach area, at a restaurant, at a Rockaway bus stop, during the return bus trip and in a deserted area when the priest and the boy walked towards the church rectory.

The DA’s office would provide no further information on any of those local sites, but did say that the priest had selected a place on the beach where he could not be seen and that the assaults in the grocery store and on the bus were "a quick grab and fondle."

When the boy got home, he and his parents went with the priest to a Mexican restaurant in Queens. It was not until the next day that he told his parents about the assault and they went to officials at the church. Those officials, under a new Vatican policy, alerted the police.

Detectives from the Queens Special Victims Squad arrested the visiting priest.

He was arraigned in Queens County Criminal Court on Wednesday on charges of second-degree sexual abuse, forcible touching and endangering the welfare of a child, according to sources in the Queens District Attorney’s office. If convicted, he could face up to one year in jail.

Bail was set at $50 thousand.

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