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Ex-Catholic school teacher faces more sex abuse charges

Oralandar Brand-Williams
The Detroit News

More sexual assault charges have been filed against a former Catholic school music teacher after two more alleged victims have come forward, Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel announced Wednesday.

Last month, state prosecutors accused Joseph (also known as Josef) Comperchio, 67, of assaulting two minors while he was employed at St. John Catholic School in Jackson during the 1970s. 

Joseph Comperchio, 66, who was a former teacher at St. John Catholic School in Jackson, was charged with six felonies for sexual misconduct on Monday.

 Comperchio, who lives in Fort Myers, Florida, is charged with five new counts of second-degree criminal sexual conduct involving two individuals. Four of the counts involve crimes that allegedly occurred when the victims were under 13, and a fifth count of second-degree criminal conduct involves an offense that allegedly occurred while the victim was physically helpless.

 The incidents reportedly happened between 1975-77. 

Comperchio is expected to be arraigned on the new charges Wednesday in Jackson County 12th District Court. 

“My office stands committed to seeking justice for all of those who have been assaulted or taken advantage of and we will continue to review the circumstances in each case with careful scrutiny and file charges when the evidence demands it,” Nessel said in a release Wednesday.

“I continue to be encouraged by the victims who come forward to share their experiences, which are undoubtedly difficult stories to tell and serve as a reminder to the rest of us that the pain which can be inflicted when predators prey on the vulnerable remains long after the reported incident.”  

Comperchio was accused last month of sexually abusing two other children. In those cases, Comperchio was charged with two counts of first-degree criminal sexual conduct, a felony charge with a penalty of up to life in prison. He also was charged with four counts of second-degree criminal sexual conduct, which is a 15-year felony.  

Comperchio was arrested Sept. 14 in Fort Myers following the initial set of charges. He waived extradition and was returned to Michigan Oct. 1. He is scheduled for a bond hearing at 1 p.m. Friday before Judge Joseph Filip of 12th District Court.

The state Attorney General's Office says it seized 1.5 million paper documents and 3.5 million electronic documents through search warrants executed in October 2018, resulting in criminal charges against 11 individuals connected to the Catholic Church.