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Former Pa. priest charged with child sexual abuse in Maryland, which has no statute of limitations

By Pam Cunningham, Reporter
Published On: Jan 03 2013 06:00:00 PM CST
Updated On: Jan 04 2013 01:03:31 PM CST

Former Berks priest accused of sexual assault

READING, Pa. -

A former Berks County priest is being charged for child sexual abuse. Police in Maryland said they have brought charges against Bruno Tucci for an incident that happened more than 30 years ago at an Ocean City motel.

Unlike Pennsylvania, Maryland has no statute of limitations in sexual abuse crimes.

That's something new Pa. lawmaker Mark Rozzi wants to change.

Newly-sworn-in Pennsylvania Representative for Berks County Mark Rozzi said he was also a child sexual abuse victim at the hands of another priest in 1983 in Muhlenberg Township when he was 13 years old.

"I was actually raped in the shower while the other boy waited outside the door and he was next," said Rozzi.

He said he came forward in 2009 after another victim and friend committed suicide, years after the statute of limitations ran out.

"I will never forget that. I didn't do anything there and when I look at it now I will never walk away," said Rozzi, "I will take on every special interest there is to get this done for the children of this state."

Ocean City, Maryland police said at this point Bruno Tucci is facing charges related to one incident of child sexual abuse at a Ocean City motel. But they said if anyone else in Pa. believes they are also a victim and it happened in Maryland, they'll investigate it.

Tucci is the man Maryland police said sexually assaulted a boy in August 1981.

"Back during the Jerry Sandusky trial we were notified by an individual that they believe they were a victim of a crime in Ocean City," said Ocean City Police Officer Michael Levy.

According to the Diocese of Allentown, in 2007 Tucci was defrocked. But from 1971 through 2002 he was Father Bruno Tucci. He worked in Reading throughout the 70s and 80s in places like Saint Margaret's, Holy Name High School, St. Peter's Church, and Central Catholic High School.

Maryland Police did not say if Tucci's alleged victim is from Pennsylvania, but said if there are victims here they can come forward because there is no statute of limitations.

"We are going to investigate it thoroughly," said Levy.

State Representative Rozzi said on January 23rd he'll be introducing a bill in Harrisburg to remove the statute of limitations in all child sexual abuse cases.