June 12, 2013: The Honorable Ellen Ceisler today sentenced Charles Engelhardt to 6 to 12 years in prison followed by 5 years of reporting probation, and Bernard Shero to 8 to 16 years in prison followed by 5 years of reporting probation for the sexual assault of an elementary school student.
“This prison sentence sends a clear message to sexual assault victims in Philadelphia. If you come forward, you will be heard,” said District Attorney Seth Williams. “I would also like to compliment the jury for its hard work in carefully sifting through the evidence, and coming up with a just verdict.”
On January 30, 2013 a jury convicted Bernard Shero of Rape, Attempted Rape, Involuntary Deviant Sexual Intercourse, Indecent Sexual Assault, Endangering the Welfare of a Child (EWOC), and Corruption of a Minor charges for the sexual assault of a student at St. Jerome Parish. Charles Engelhardt was convicted of Indecent Assault, EWOC, Corruption of a Minor and Conspiracy charges for the sexual assault of the same student. Engelhardt, who was a priest at the parish, assaulted the 10- year-old boy between 1998 and 1999. Shero, who was a parochial teacher at the parish’s school, assaulted the same boy in 2000. Edward Avery, a priest at the parish, pleaded guilty last year to assaulting the same boy between 1998 and 1999. Avery is currently serving a 2 ½ to 5 year prison sentence for his crimes.