A retired La Crosse priest pleaded not guilty to a charge of 4th degree sexual assault.
Monsignor Bernard McGarty did not personally appear in court Monday to be charged with allegedly approaching a woman on a park bench and offering to pay her for sex.
The incident reportedly happened in May, outside the main branch of the La Crosse Public Library.
The 94-year-old McGarty is on leave from the La Crosse Diocese while his case is in court.
Judge Todd Bjerke asked McGarty’s attorney to try reaching a settlement in the case before the next scheduled hearing on Aug. 8.