Pallottine priest Guido John Carcich, who pleaded guilty last months to mishandling more than $2 million in charity funds, will begin assisting doctors and nurses next week at the Maryland penitentiary's hospital and clinic under a probation plan worked out by state officials.
Carcich will work a 40-hour, five day week at the prison in Baltimore and will live in a Baltimore house owned by the Pallottine reilgious order, state probation officials said yesterday.
Attorney General Francis (Bill) Burch, who has been criticized for agreeing to the plea bargain that gave Carcich probation, said he was "disappointed and dismayed" by the work program for the priest approved by Baltimore Judge David Ross.
"It does not go anywhere near as far as I felt it should," said Burch, who has conceded that public reaction to the plea may harm his campaign to by Maryland's next governor.
Burch had said last month that the plea agreement was a "fair and equitable disposition of the case . . . not a slap on the wrist." He added then that the specific probation program should require Carcich to be at the prison "16, 18, 20 hours a day and eat with the inmates and do anything an inmate would do . . .
Burch said yesterday, however, that he had nothing to do with the program worked out by corrections and probation officials and approved by Ross last week.
The program calls for Carcich to work for the hospital's professional staff "assisting in the delivery of basic medical care to patients." This could include assisting with physical therapy treatment, according to Leslie Royale of the state police and probation department.
Carcich will also perform counseling duties that are "nonmedical in nature," and the division of correction with Ross' approval will be able to assign him to other institutions to minister to the needs of prisoners, Royale said.
Ross has ordered the priest to work full time in the prisons for one year of his 18-month probation.
Burch said Ross had rejected a prior plan presented by probation officials that would have required Carcich "to do more. He was going to be assigned to do everything in the medical unit, (including) cleaning up the place, making beds."
"But I understand the judge felt he (Carcich) should be required to use his talents in a more meaningful way," Burch added.