By SHERRI KOLADE
DEARBORN — Sacred Heart Parish’s priest was placed on an administrative leave of absence Aug. 6 after the Catholic Archdiocese of Detroit discovered police arrested him for alleged drunken driving and indecent exposure.
Dearborn police officers arrested the Rev. Peter Petroske, 57, Aug. 3, and three days later archdiocesan officials notified Sacred Heart Parish staff of Petroske’s suspension. Petroske became priest of the parish, 22430 Michigan Ave., in 2008.
According to published reports, Petroske was arrested about a block from Sacred Heart on Michigan Avenue in Dearborn, and had a laptop computer with him in the vehicle.
Joe Kohn, director of public relations for the Archdiocese of Detroit, issued a statement to the public Aug. 7 about the incident and said Petroske’s suspension is open-ended.
“Father Robert Blondell, a retired priest for the archdiocese, has been named temporary administrator of Sacred Heart Parish and will oversee day-to-day operations at the parish,” Kohn said in the statement. “The archdiocese takes such matters seriously and is cooperating fully with law enforcement.”
Kohn added in the statement that “this is a difficult time for the parish community, and we ask for prayers for all who are impacted.”
Dearborn Police Chief Ronald Haddad said he will not give a statement until after Petroske’s arraignment,
scheduled for Aug. 14 in 19th District Court.
Petroske is scheduled for a pretrial Sept. 13 in 19th District Court.
Dearborn Police Department Records Associate Donna Kutylowski said Petroske’s police report is currently sealed and under investigation and the department could not release any information regarding the circumsrances of his arrest.
About 1,900 families attend Sacred Heart Parish, making it the second largest parish in Dearborn. Church of the Divine Child, 1055 N. Silvery Lane, is the largest parish in Dearborn.
Prior to preaching at Sacred Heart Parish, Petroske preached at Saint Pius X Parish in Southgate for 14 years.
(Sherri Kolade can be reached at [email protected])