The Rev. Louis Miller was sentenced this morning to 20 years in prison in connection with abusing children over four decades.
Miller, 72, who pleaded guilty March 31 to 50 sexual abuse counts involving 21 victims, will be eligible for probation after serving 20 percent four years of his sentence. The retired Roman Catholic priest also can ask for shock probation after a month in prison.
Jefferson Circuit Judge Ann O’Malley Shake issued the sentence in a courtroom that included some of Miller’s victims, who are now adults.
Miller could have received more than 400 years in prison under the laws in place at the time of most of the crimes, but he opted to be sentenced under current law and received the maximum punishment.
In addition to the sentence in his Jefferson County criminal case, Miller is scheduled to go on trial June 9 in Oldham Circuit Court on 14 charges of child sexual abuse.
He also has been accused of abuse in 94 civil lawsuits among the more than 250 that have been filed against the Archdiocese of Louisville since April 2002 in connection with allegations of abuse by priests and others connected with the Catholic Church. The archdiocese is accused of covering up knowledge of alleged abuse. The archdiocese has denied that charge.
The next step in the civil lawsuits is mediation sessions scheduled for next week.
In a deposition Thursday in connection with the lawsuits, Miller admitted he was a pedophile and said that three archbishops knew of his problems and kept him in the priesthood.