After Schmalz forwarded transcripts of the text messages and other materials to O’Connell in August 2012, the bishop removed Riedlinger from the parish, placed him in an in-patient treatment program and later assigned him to restricted ministry away from children, the diocese confirmed.But for more than a year, O’Connell refused to tell parishioners at St."Wherever he is, he will be a danger to kids, especially boys," Schmalz said.
The phone number from which they originated — now disconnected — had been listed under Riedlinger’s name in public records.
The diocese notified the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office of the second complaint against Riedlinger immediately after O’Connell received it.
Even then, the statement makes no mention of the fact that Riedlinger believed he was corresponding with a 16-year-old boy during sexually explicit conversations.
"Father Riedlinger has been the subject of two complaints to the diocese over the past few years regarding his participation in inappropriate cell phone text communication over a period of some years with adults," according to the statement, which was read aloud at weekend Masses.
A law enforcement official familiar with the probe said the case was compromised in part because Schmalz was not in New Jersey when the sting took place.