Monsignor waives hearing

Msgr. Gregory L. Parlante, formerly of St. Cornelius Church in Chadds Ford, today waived his right to a preliminary hearing in connection with his arrest on drug and theft charges. A formal arraignment in Media is scheduled for March 21, according to Magisterial District Judge Wendy B. Roberts.

Parlante was represented by attorney Eric Strand who declined comment after waiving the hearing in Roberts district court in Concord Township.

The monsignor, who went on medical leave in last March, is accused of possessing illegal methamphetamines and stealing $5,500 from the St. Cornelius Sunday collection between Jan. 1 and March 27 of 2017.

According to arrest affidavits, maintenance personnel were cleaning out Parlante’s office in May of last year and found the drugs in a package with Parlante’s name in his desk drawer. Also found were a bottle of blue liquid, a clear plastic bag containing crystals and several plastic baggies and straws containing a "white crystalline substance," which later tested positive for methamphetamine.

During the investigation of the drugs, state police said they learned of the thefts. According to the court documents, a church volunteer claimed to witness Parlante taking $500 from each Sunday collection. Later, an employee said he made deposits of anywhere from $1,000 to $5,000 into a bank account Parlante had at the Iron Workers Bank. The monsignor’s salary of $27,000 was deposited directly into a PNC bank account.

Parlante had been assigned to St. Cornelius on Ridge Road for 13 years before he took medical leave.

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About Rich Schwartzman

Rich Schwartzman has been reporting on events in the greater Chadds Ford area since September 2001 when he became the founding editor of The Chadds Ford Post. In April 2009 he became managing editor of ChaddsFordLive. He is also an award-winning photographer.

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