DA drops efforts to keep ex-LA priest locked up

By GILLIAN FLACCUS | October 5, 2011 | 3:55 PM EDT

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Prosecutors have dropped efforts to keep a sexually abusive former priest from the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Los Angeles locked up indefinitely in a mental hospital.

Los Angeles County district attorney spokeswoman Sandi Gibbons said Wednesday that prosecutors informed the court of their decision at a hearing on Friday.

According to a statement Gibbons provided, Michael Baker did not plead guilty to any "sexually violent" offenses and so he cannot qualify as a sexually violent predator under California law.

In 2007, Baker pleaded guilty to 12 felony counts of oral copulation with a person under the age of 18 for abusing two boys.

He was to be released on Aug. 23 when prosecutors intervened.

It wasn't immediately clear if Baker is currently in custody.