With two weeks to go before the judge’s deadline, the Rev. Andrew McCormick has found a new lawyer to represent him in his retrial on charges he sexually assaulted a 10-year-old altar boy in 1997 when he was at St. John Cantius church in Bridesburg.
Center City criminal defense lawyer Trevan Borum confirmed Wednesday that he will represent McCormick, 58, in the retrial. Borum said he will formally enter his appearance at a May 29 status hearing on the case before Philadelphia Common Pleas Court Judge Gwendolyn N. Bright.
If Borum’s name is familiar to some, it may be because he had been hired by retired Catholic priest Robert Brennan. Brennan, 76, was charged with raping a boy from ages 11 to 14 who was a member of the “altar guild” at the Resurrection of Our Lord parish school in Rhawnhurst. The criminal charges were dismissed after the 26-year-old alleged victim died of an accidental drug overdose on Oct. 13.
McCormick had been searching for a new lawyer since March 12 when a jury deadlocked on the charges against him and defense attorney William J. Brennan Jr. was permitted to withdraw. Earlier, Brennan had said he felt uncomfortable after discovering shortly before trial that he knew the extended family of the alleged victim.
Bright has imposed a gag order on all parties to try to limit publicity about the case.
McCormick, ordained in 1982, was pastor of Sacred Heart parish near Bridgeport, Montgomery County, when he and 26 Roman Catholic priests were suspended in March 2011 by the Archdiocese of Philadelphia for possible inappropriate conduct with children. The suspension did not involve the alleged victim in the trial that ended in March.