Dakota County Attorney James Backstrom announced that Jacob Andrew Bertrand, age 33, who is an ordained Catholic priest currently assigned to the Roman Catholic Diocese of San Diego, California, has been charged* with two counts of Criminal Sexual Conduct in the Third Degree in connection with alleged sexual penetration of a woman occurring in June or July of 2010 in Dakota County. The criminal complaint alleges that the sexual conduct occurred while Bertrand was providing a private mass for the victim in the basement of her parent’s home in Mendota Heights.
Additional facts pertaining to this case can be found in the criminal complaint, which is located online at: http://www.co.dakota.mn.us/LawJustice/CriminalComplaint/Pages/default.aspx
Once in custody, a mug shot can be viewed online at: http://www.co.dakota.mn.us/LawJustice/Jail/Pages/inmate-search.aspx
Backstrom commented: “It is a felony under Minnesota law for any member of the clergy to have sexual relations with an individual who is not their spouse, during the course of a meeting in which religious or spiritual advice, aid, or comfort is given, or while ongoing religious or spiritual advice, aid, or comfort is occurring.”
Bertrand is scheduled to make his first court appearance in connection with these charges on Monday, October 10, 2016 at 9:00 a.m. in Hastings.
If you have questions, contact James Backstrom at 651-438-4440.
*Criminal charges are not evidence of guilt. A defendant/suspect is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.