In a statement released Wednesday afternoon, Deacon Dan Joyce, the communications director for the Catholic Diocese of Jefferson City, said Father Brendan Doyle, 73, has been suspended from providing "any public ministry."
Joyce said the diocesan action was taken, even though "it is the understanding of the Diocese that, at this time, the U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Missouri has declined prosecution."
He said the seven-member Review Board considered the results of its own investigation, the information it received from law enforcement and the policies of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops' "Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People."
Joyce told reporters late Wednesday afternoon: "Based upon all the information it received, the diocesan review board believed that Fr. Doyle violated the Charter based on downloaded pornographic images that were found on a laptop computer he owned and a school laptop he used.
"The review board recommended to Bishop John R. Gaydos that Fr. Doyle not return to public ministry at this time (and) Bishop Gaydos has accepted the recommendation."
More details will be published in Thursday morning's News Tribune print edition.