No deal for the priest

The Rev. Patrick Dunne rejected a plea deal by the District Attorney’s office this morning on charges that he stole more than $300,000 from his own church — including donations earmarked for Katrina victims.

Dunne, the former pastor at Our Lady of Sorrows, is facing up to 15 years in state prison on a felony charge of second-degree grand larceny.

The 63-year-old priest headed the Mamaroneck Avenue church since 1991. Prosecutors say he had had a serious gambling habit and stole the money over a six-year period, starting in 2002.

Dunne appeared in Westchester County Court today on a special type of arraignment for people who are looking to waive their right to go before a grand jury and plead guilty. His attorney, Richard Ferrante, told the court that his client would not be taking a deposition in the case, which reverts the case back to local court.

Dunne is due back in White Plains City Court on Dec. 12.

Rebecca Baker

Rebecca Baker joined The Journal News in March 2004. She covers Eastchester, Bronxville and Tuckahoe, and was previously the state and county courts reporter in Westchester County. In prior jobs, she covered the Town of Greenburgh and Rockland County government and politics. Before coming to The Journal News, she was a municipal reporter for newspapers in New Haven, Conn. and Warren, Ohio.