Black Collar Crime (May 2019)
Compiled by Bill Dunn
Arrested / Charged
Gerold Langsch, 75, Austin, TX: Misdemeanor assault by contact. Langsch, pastor at St. Paul Catholic Church, is accused of sexually touching a woman in home hospice care while administering the last rites Oct. 5. In the arrest affidavit, the woman, who has severe complications from diabetes, alleged Langsch anointed her chest with holy water, massaged her breast and pinched her nipple while asking, “Does that feel good?”
She told police he also tried to slip his hand inside her diaper but was unable to and that she was left feeling like a “nasty, dirty piece of meat.” Source: AP, 3-20-19
Norman E. Washington Sr., 53, Bay Minette, AL: Enticing a child and 3 counts of 2nd-degree sexual abuse. Washington, pastor at Faith Community Full Gospel Church, was indicted by a grand jury. Source: WKRG, 3-16-19
Jean C. Jean-Philippe, 64, Homestead, FL: Sexual battery of an incapacitated victim. Jean-Philippe, pastor at Sacred Heart Catholic Church, is accused of drugging and assaulting a parishioner who brought him food. She alleged she lost consciousness after he gave her a drink and later woke up naked in bed next to him. Source: Miami Herald, 3-16-19
Epati “Pat” Lang, 38, Burien, WA: Rape of a child and incest. Lang, youth pastor at Divine Covenant International Church, is accused of repeated assaults on a family member, starting when she was 15. He also allegedly sent sexually explicit text messages to her and “threatened to kill any boyfriend she might have.” Source: KIRO, 3-14-19
John G. Allen, 75, York, PA: 4 counts of indecent assault and 2 counts of corruption of minors. Allen is accused of molesting 2 boys between 1997-2002 while they were 13- and 14-year-old altar boys at St. Margaret Mary Alacoque Church in Harrisburg, where he was pastor. Allen was removed from ministry in 2002 and defrocked in 2006. The extended statute of limitations for sexual crimes committed against minors allows charges to still be filed. Source: pennlive.com, 3-14-19
Sabine Griego, 81, Las Vegas, NM: Sexual penetration of a minor and coercion resulting in great bodily harm and mental anguish. He’s accused of raping a 9-year-old altar server when he was pastor at Queen of Heaven Catholic Church in Albuquerque in 1990 and continuing the assaults until he was transferred 2 years later when the girl was in 4th grade. It’s alleged the Archdiocese of Santa Fe knew of complaints about Griego as far back as the early 1990s and has settled with over 30 victims but never reported allegations to authorities. Not until 2005 was he removed from the priesthood.
Griego first assaulted “Jane Doe A” in the rectory, according to the arrest warrant, and made her clean up the vomit his attack caused. Another time, the warrant said, he became angry and slammed her face into a table, breaking her nose. She told her mother it happened in P.E. class. The warrant states he told he would kill her, cut out her tongue or hurt her mother if she told anyone. Source: New Mexican, 3-13-19
John Murray, 77, Newcastle, N. Ireland: 2 counts of indecent assault. Murray, a retired Catholic priest, is accused of assaults on 2 females on unspecified dates between 1976-82 when he was pastor at an east Belfast parish. Source: Belfast Telegraph, 3-11-19
David N. Powell, 67, Terre Haute, IN: Voyeurism with a camera. Powell, pastor at Grace Temple Church, is accused of taking a cellphone video of a Planet Fitness employee over the top of a closed bathroom stall. Powell, a fitness club member, allegedly had more images of nude men on his phone. The employee told police he’d seen Powell earlier standing naked in front of a mirror for longer than it would take a person to change clothes. Source: Tribune Star, 3-8-19
Pāvels Zeiļa, 73, a Latvian Catholic priest in the Diocese of Rēzekne-Aglona, and 2 unidentified men are accused of human trafficking and sexual abuse of a defenseless person involving a developmentally disabled adult male. A police unit combating trafficking and pimping received a tip last August from a nongovernmental organization that led to the investigation. Source: Latvian Public Broadcasting, 3-8-19
Gregory S. Reese, 45, Birch Tree, MO: Child molestation and 3 counts of statutory sodomy. Reese, pastor at Mountain View Assembly of God Church, is charged with having mouth-to-genital contact with a 14-year-old girl at his home. Source: News-Leader, 3-8-19
Armand D. Garcia, 49, Philadelphia: Rape, corruption of a minor and sexual abuse of a minor through the use of photographs, videotapes, depictions on computer or films. Garcia is alleged to have committed the crimes on Aug. 1, 2014, when he was pastor at Immaculate Heart of Mary Catholic Parish, where he was assigned in 2011 after having taken a voluntary personal leave in 2010. He was transferred in 2014 to St. Martin of Tours Parish.
The alleged victim is a 16-year-old altar girl who was reportedly offered alcohol and marijuana during several encounters besides the one in August 2014, some of them recorded on video, a source said. Source: philly.com, 3-5-19
Manuel Guevara Fonseca, Heredia, Costa Rica: Sexual abuse against an underage person. Guevara, pastor at Santo Domingo Catholic Parish, was arrested a day after the Archdiocese of San José removed him for a complaint of “improper behavior toward a minor,” the prosecutor’s office said. A complaint was lodged with church officials in 2015 about the alleged incident 11 years ago when the complainant was a 12-year-old altar boy. Source: ameliarueda.com, 2-28-19
Peter McBride, 78, a Canadian deacon ministering at St. Helen’s Catholic Church in Vero Beach, FL, was charged with soliciting prostitution during a human trafficking investigation in which 173 people were arrested. “The Deacon’s permission to perform any public ministry in the Diocese of Palm Beach was immediately rescinded and his home Diocese in Canada was notified,” a church statement said. Source: tcpalm.com, 2-27-19
An unidentified Catholic priest from Cadiz City, Philippines, is charged with molesting a 4-year-old girl. Police and Gerardo Alminaza, Diocese of San Carlos bishop, declined to name the priest or the parish.
The alleged victim attends the church day care where the priest is assigned and where her mother works as a secretary, said Robert Mansueto, acting Cadiz police chief. He said the priest allegedly kissed the girl and touched her genitals on several occasions, the last on Feb. 8. Source: inquirer.net, 2-27-19
Jesus A. Castañeda Serna, 51, Fresno, CA: Multiple counts of sexual battery by representation of professional purpose. He’s accused of performing sex acts on 2 males while serving as pastor at Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe, an Anglican church where he served from 2007-17. Police believe there are many other victims, some of whom are undocumented and afraid to report the alleged abuse.
Police Chief Jerry Dyer said Castañeda Serna allegedly told followers they had sinned or were cursed and needed to be rubbed with “sacred oil” and that he had to examine their semen before they could be healed. Source: Fresno Bee, 2-26-19
Michael Wustrow, 56, Rockville Centre, NY: Receipt and possession of child pornography. Until an FBI raid in September 2017, Wustrow directed 8 choirs at St. Agnes Catholic Cathedral, including a 50-voice choir for boys and girls in grades 1-2. He has a master’s degree in organ performance from Yale University and was set to start a new job as music director for the Diocese of Orlando in November 2017 but withdrew after the raid. Source: NY Daily News, 2-26-19
Pleaded / Convicted
Richard J. Shaka, 73, Blaine, MN: Pleaded guilty to criminal vehicular homicide involving grossly negligent driving in the death of Jenna Bixby, 30, who died when Shaka crossed the center line into her lane in February 2018. He’s the founding pastor of All Nations Christian Assembly and taught bible and theology courses at North Central University. Shaka’s blood alcohol was more than twice the legal limit. A plea deal calls for a relatively light sentence of 32 months in prison and 16 months’ supervised release.
Bixby, a 911 dispatcher at the Minneapolis Emergency Communications Center, was driving to work about 8 p.m. Her husband was listening to the dispatch audio and could hear an officer report the victim was “not breathing, unresponsive.” Two hours later, state troopers knocked on his door with the grim news. Source: KROC, 3-5-19
Donald L. Reynolds, 59, Edmore, ND: Pleaded guilty to felony theft for stealing $34,668 since 2004 as pastor of High Plains Ministry, a congregation of 6 merged Lutheran parishes. He resigned in June after being confronted. A plea deal calls for him to either serve a month in jail or complete 300 hours of community service, along with restitution and 3 years’ probation. Source: Grand Forks Herald, 3-4-19
Luckner Stimphil, 55, Brandon, FL, and Elwolfine Dufort, 31, Riverview, FL: Pleaded guilty to conspiracy to defraud the United States. Stimphil, pastor at First Calvary Family Life Ministry in Tampa, and Dufort, his daughter, agreed to pay over $11 million in restitution to the U.S. Treasury.
Stimphil operated a tax preparation business called Top Popular Tax from 2011 through at least mid-2015. Court records show the business submitted false information on clients’ Schedule C and 8863 forms, the latter associated with a claim for the American Opportunity Credit, and on other forms such as claims for the tax credit on fuels. Source: Business Journal, 2-28-19
Scott A. Patschke, 53, Wausau, WI: Pleaded guilty to child enticement for sending sexually explicit messages to a person he thought was a 15-year-old boy. Patschke, associate pastor at Trinity Lutheran Church, sent nude photos and tried to arrange a meeting in the bathroom of a Walmart in Rib Mountain. He was actually exchanging messages with members of a citizen-led sting group called Impact. Group members met him and recorded the interaction, then shared it with police. Source: Daily Herald, 2-26-19
Jordan D. Baird, 27, Warrenton, VA: Pleaded guilty to 2 counts of indecent liberties with a minor by a person in a position of trust for attempting to have sex with a 16-year-old girl from The Life Church in 2014 when he was a church youth leader and music teacher.
Baird served 8 months in jail in 2015 for taking indecent liberties with a minor and for sending suggestive messages to another teen girl. Source: Fauquier Times, 2-25-19
Francis McDermott, 75, Biddeford, England: 9 years and 11 months in prison after a jury found him guilty of 18 counts of gross indecency and indecent assault on 6 male and female victims under age 16 or 14, including a brother and sister, while he worked as a Catholic priest in 1971-79.
A female victim from Norwich told the court how he took advantage of her after her father died. “You put your hands down my knickers and snogged me. My first experience should not have been with a Roman Catholic priest who was 17 years older.”
Another woman told the judge she “naively felt I was complicit” and that “McDermott groomed me, my parents and my siblings,” calling him a “disgusting, despicable, lying monster.” Source: UK Mirror, 3-15-19
Michael A. Endicott, 75, Brisbane, Australia: 1 year in jail with all but 6 months suspended for convictions of indecent dealing with a child for taking nude photos of a boy when he was 9 and 13 and Endicott was a Catholic priest and teacher at Villanova College in the 1970s and 1980s. He told the court the photos were artistic rather than sexual. He pleaded guilty in 2010 to similar offenses involving another boy and received a suspended 1-year term. Source: ABC, 3-8-19
William E. “Tim” Smith Jr., 48, Palmer, TN: 9½ years in prison after a jury found him guilty of attempted rape of a child. Smith, pastor at Palmer Church of God, was found having sex in his truck in June 2018 with a 12-year old girl in a remote wooded area where deputies were looking for a stolen vehicle, said Grundy County Sheriff Clint Shrum. He was also found in possession of Schedule II prescription drugs. Source: WVTC, 3-8-19
Ryan C. Mutchler, 31, Beaverton, OR: 60 days in jail, 5 years’ probation and sex offender registration after pleading guilty to online sexual corruption of a child. Mutchler, a youth pastor at Mountain Park Church and band teacher at Aloha High School, befriended a 14-year-old girl in June 2018 at a church camp, started “sexting” her and suggested meeting for sexual activities. He later sent explicit messages to a detective posing as the girl and using her phone. Source: KOIN, 3-7-19
Taylor T. Martin, 23, Lincoln, NE: 1 year in jail after pleading no contest to debauching a minor in 2017 for kissing a 12-year-old boy in a church bathroom and asking if he could perform a sex act on him. The boy allegedly told Martin no and left. Martin was a youth leader at First Plymouth Congregational Church. Source: Journal Star, 3-7-19
Philippe Barbarin, 68, Lyon, France: 6 months in prison suspended and a fine of €45,000 ($50,600) after a court found him guilty of failing to report sexual abuse of Boy Scouts by Bernard Preynat, a priest in the Catholic Archdiocese of Lyon. Barbarin, a cardinal and archbishop, “made the choice in conscience, to preserve the institution to which he belongs, not to transmit them to justice,” said Brigitte Verney, president of the Lyon Criminal Court.
Preynat was first accused in 1991 and retired in 2015. He’s under indictment and awaits trial. Barbarin became archbishop in 2002. Source: NPR, 3-7-19
An unidentified priest, age 50, Canet-en-Roussillon, France, was sentenced to 15 years in prison for the rape and sexual assault of 3 male adolescents between 2006-09 when he was pastor of St. Joseph Catholic Parish. It was alleged in court that the bishop of the Diocese of Perpignan failed to investigate allegations about the Swiss-born priest. Source: La Croix International, 3-4-19
James Jackson, 50, W. Palm Beach, FL: 100 years in prison after a jury found him guilty of 11 counts of sexual activity with a child and lewd or lascivious molestation. He was arrested in 2016 after 3 underage girls told investigators he used his status as a pastor of a storefront church called Life in the Garden Ministries to groom them for sex during counseling sessions. He and his wife also ran a group called Positive Habitat for Aspiring Teens.
Valerie Jackson, 49, pleaded guilty to child abuse and child neglect charges in May 2018 and awaits sentencing. One girl testified she was a preteen when “sessions” with Jackson involved watching pornography on his laptop that led to sex. Source: Palm Beach Post, 3-1-19
Terry Millender, 54, Alexandria, VA: 8 years in prison after a jury found him guilty of multiple fraud counts while he was senior pastor at Victorious Life Church. His wife, Brenda Millender, was convicted on some counts and acquitted on others before a judge vacated all counts against her.
Court records said the pastor recruited investors in a $2-million scheme by saying he would use Nigerian oil deals to finance micro-loans to African entrepreneurs that would provide a high rate of return. In reality, he used the money to conduct high-risk day trades and buy a $1.75-million home. Source: Fox DC, 2-26-19
Ellis W. Simmons, 40: 11 years in prison after pleading guilty to criminal sexual conduct, admitting to 2 instances of sexual penetration of an 11-year-old girl in 1999-2000 and a 2005 instance with a 14-year-old girl. He was a youth pastor at St. Mark African Methodist Episcopal Church and at Calvary Baptist Church in Duluth, MN. He served time from 2013-17 in Illinois for molesting 3 girls ranging in age from 7 to 10.
Statements from both Minnesota victims were read at sentencing. “The choices this monster made left me broken physically, mentally and spiritually before I was even a teenager,” one wrote. “Saying out loud what he did was an unbearable task. He took away my ability to speak.” Source: News Tribune, 2-26-19
Civil Lawsuits Filed
Catholic priest Rigoberto Rivera and the Archdiocese of Santiago, Chile, are being sued for $530,000 by Daniel Rojas Alvarez, 43, an indigent man who alleges Rivera drugged and raped him in 2015. Rojas Alvarez alleges it happened at the cathedral, where he’d gone to get help to buy medicine for his daughter, and that when he later told Cardinal Ricardo Ezzati what happened, Ezzati told him to pray for Rivera, gave him $45 and asked him not to tell anybody else.
Pope Francis accepted Ezzati’s resignation as archbishop of Santiago in March, 2 years after he offered it. Source: AP, 3-22-19
The Diocese of Camden, NJ, St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Parish and deceased former Bishop Celestine Damiano conspired to cover up a 1962 assault by Richard Gerbino, pastor at St. Francis in Vineland, alleges a suit filed by a 73-year-old who says he reported the assault to another priest right away and was driven to see Damiano.
“Never speak of this again,” was Damiano’s response, the suit alleges. Ironically, the priest who drove him, John P. O’Connor, admitted molesting a boy in 1984 and was removed from ministry in 2002.
Plaintiff “A.S.” says his friend slept in O’Connor’s bed in the parish house on the night in question during a visit while O’Connor slept on the couch and he slept with Gerbino in his bed. Gerbino, now deceased, was O’Connor’s superior. The plaintiff was friends with O’Connor when he was in high school and O’Connor was a seminarian.
During the night, he alleges, Gerbino grabbed A.S.’s penis and tried to make the 16-year old touch his but he wouldn’t and fled the room. The diocese confirmed that it paid a settlement last year to the daughter of another of Gerbino’s alleged victims, Michael Kissell, who killed himself in front of her in 1970 when she was 7. Gerbino resigned from St. Francis in 1980 due to a drinking problem, it was reported at the time. Source: nj.com, 3-13-19
St. Bartholomew of the Apostle Parish in Scotch Plains, NJ, the Catholic Archdiocese of Newark and then-Archbishop John H. Myers are being sued for negligence by “Richard Roe,” who alleges he was molested by convicted priest Kevin Gugliotta when he was 11 in 2004, a year after church officials were told about allegations he assaulted Boy Scouts before becoming a priest.
Despite the allegations, Gugliotta was appointed head of youth ministry at St. Bartholomew and later transferred to a Mahwah parish. Roe, now 26, alleges he forced him to participate in oral sex, fondling and masturbation on trips and on church property. He pleaded guilty in 2016 in Pennsylvania with 20 unrelated counts of child pornography and was recently released from prison. Source: nj.com, 3-10-19
Close Israeli relatives of Eliezer Berland, 81, leader of the Shuvu Bonim Hasidic sect who was convicted of sex crimes in 2016, are being sued for alleged personal use of charitable donations totaling $13.76 million. Berland’s wife, son, grandson and 11 others are accused by Isachar Bar Hillel, who was appointed by the Justice Ministry to liquidate the assets of Shuvu Bonim. Bar Hillel determined much of the money went to buy real estate overseas, including in the Ukrainian city of Uman, a pilgrimage destination in Bratslav Hasidism. Source: Times of Israel, 3-4-19
The Diocese of Oakland, CA, and Bishop Michael Barber are being sued by “John Doe,” 26, a former seminarian who alleges he was blindfolded and raped by Catholic priest Van Dinh in the St. Michael’s Catholic Church rectory in Livermore in 2017. A warranted search turned up a glass meth pipe, thong underwear, a blindfold and sex toys.
Livermore police recommended charging Dinh with sodomy by force, violence or fear and oral copulation by force or fear, but the Alameda County District Attorney’s Office declined to prosecute without specifying why. Source: KNTV, 2-26-19
Civil Lawsuits Settled
The Diocese of Norwich, CT, agreed to pay former altar boy Jonathan Roy $900,000 to settle a claim he was molested “hundreds of times” by now-deceased Catholic priest Paul Hebert at Most Holy Trinity Parish between 1990-96, starting when he was 11. Hebert died in 2010. It’s alleged Hebert bought him expensive gifts, gave him money and plied him with alcohol to keep him under his control and that former Bishop Daniel Reilly knew or should have known that Hebert had engaged in deviant conduct with boys at St. Michael’s in Pawcatuck as far back as the 1970s. Source: Hartford Courant, 3-12-19
Mitchell R. Olson and Grace Ministry Center, Kimball, MI, settled for an undisclosed amount a suit filed by Justine L. Morden, now 21, who alleges sexual abuse by Olson when he was pastor of the church in 2016. Criminal charges were never filed. Olson resigned in October 2017 and now works as a realtor.
Morden’s family belonged to the church. After she approached him to learn how to get closer to God, she alleges, Olson arranged to come to her apartment to perform an anointing ceremony to cleanse her of her sins. According to the police report cited in the suit, Olson made “skin to skin contact” with her shoulders, breasts, stomach, buttocks and pubic region while applying oil. Source: Times Herald, 3-8-19
The Diocese of Rochester, NY, has offered a 5-figure settlement to a woman who accuses Janice Nadeau, 85, a retired Catholic nun, of physical and sexual assault when Nadeau was principal at St. Margaret Mary School in Irondequoit in 1977. The School Sisters of Notre Dame nun now lives in a long-term care facility and suffers from advanced dementia.
Her accuser, Christina Grana, 54, told a reporter that Nadeau “was the monster in my closet. She was the monster under my bed.” She and others described her as a harsh and aggressive disciplinarian who like to “pick on” students.
Grana said what set Nadeau off on that day in 1977 was a letter from her mother telling the nun that the kilt Grana wore as part of her school uniform as a 12-year-old was not too short; she had measured it and it was within the rules.
She alleges Nadeau slapped her and knocked her to the floor after reading the letter, then straddled her. “She kept yelling at me, saying, ‘You’re a slut’ and ‘You’re inviting rape and you’re going to get raped.’ ” Then she reached under Grana’s kilt and penetrated her, something Grana didn’t tell anyone for 41 years.
“I remember looking in the mirror and seeing handprints on my face,” Grana told a reporter. She remembers seeing blood in her urine. The diocese also interviewed her mother, eventually agreeing the claims were credible. Source: Democrat & Chronicle, 3-1-19
Eric D. Readon, Miami Gardens, FL, was ordered to pay $3,000 plus 6.33% interest in a small-claims judgment for failing to deliver a car he was selling. LaTasha Blue sued Readon, pastor of New Beginning Missionary Baptist Church, in 2017 after she sent him $3,000 as a down payment. After 2½ years he hadn’t delivered the car and kept the money. A court document said the church was set to be auctioned off online in late April. Source: WPLG, 3-12-19
Jerred C. Peacock, 34, Estero, FL, had his bail revoked after he was found in his car Feb. 11 with the same underage girl he was accused of having sexual contact with in October. Peacock, a youth pastor at Living Waters Church, was arrested then for allegedly touching the 17-year-old’s genitals and having her touch his at his home while his wife was at work between March and August 2018. He was subject to a “no contact” court order after being charged with unlawful sexual activity.
Peacock was interviewed in February 2016 when he was youth pastor at The Church at Bradenton about his church holding a “Silver Ring Thing” event to promote teen abstinence. “It’s not talked about enough because it’s a little taboo,” Peacock said. “We want to create an open dialogue with teens.” Source: Naples Daily News, 3-13-19
Yona Metzger, 66, the former Israeli chief Ashkenazi rabbi who started serving 3½ years in prison in May 2017 for bribery, fraud and tax evasion, was freed after a parole board granted his request for a reduced sentence. The Supreme Court had already reduced his original 4½-year sentence by a year. Source: Arutz Sheva, 3-6-19
Albert Weathers, 46, Sterling Heights, MI: Open murder and use of a firearm in commission of a felony. Weathers, pastor at Logos Church in Detroit, is accused in the December death of Kelly Stough, a 36-year-old transgendered woman.
At Weathers’ preliminary hearing, Kyra Butts, another transgendered woman, testified that Weathers “was one of the guys that I hooked up with. He would drive around a lot before he would pick someone up.” Weathers also worked at Great Lakes Water Authority. Source: Detroit News, 2-25-19
Brian D. Batke, 72, Surrey, BC, a former Cloverdale Christian Fellowship Church elder charged with sexual assault and 2 counts of sexual exploitation, has chosen to be tried in February 2020 by a Supreme Court judge without a jury. Charges stem from incidents in 2005 when the alleged victim was a minor.
Samuel Emerson, 35, Cloverdale Christian pastor, and his wife Madelaine Emerson, 38, were charged in 2018 with 28 counts of sexual assault, sexual touching of a minor and threats to cause death or bodily harm. Their trials are pending. Source: Surrey Now-Leader, 2-22-19
Catholic priest John Paddack is accused by 5 New York men of sexual abuse when they attended schools and churches in the Bronx, Manhattan and Staten Island from 1988-2002. Msgr. Paddack, a former teacher and guidance counselor and now the administrator of the Church of Notre Dame, denies it and says the men see “a chance to make money.”
Four of the men spoke through a lawyer, choosing to remain anonymous, but Rafael Mendoza, who was a freshman at Cardinal Hayes High School in 1996, alleged Paddack would “unbuckle my pants and grab my genitals. His face would get bloodshot red.”
Another accuser who attended Cardinal Hayes and was an altar boy, described similar encounters. The New York Archdiocese’s Lay Review Board deemed a claim by one of the men as unsubstantiated in 2012. Source: NY Daily News, 3-18-19
The Diocese of Sioux City, IA, released a list of 28 Catholic priests credibly accused of sexual abuse of minors. One man on the list, George McFadden, has 39 allegations between 1960-85. The diocese paid victim Daniel Nash $150,000 in 2007 to settle his suit.
Now living on permanent disability in Ithaca, NY, Nash says McFadden raped him 2 or 3 times a week when he was an altar boy from 1969-72: “I became his concubine.” He hid his bloody underwear under a floorboard in his house. He told his father, who went to see McFadden, but Nash still had to keep serving Mass.
According to a September 2018 story, McFadden is 94 and living in Fort Wayne, IN. “I swear on my mother’s grave I never touched him,” McFadden told a reporter in February. Source: Daily Sentinel/Jefferson Herald, 2-27-19
Removed / Resigned
Geoffrey Brooke, Jefferson City, MO, was placed on leave as associate pastor at Immaculate Conception Catholic Church while alleged boundary violations with minors are investigated. He was ordained in 2015. Source: News Tribune, 3-16-19
David L. Poulson, 65, Erie, PA, sentenced in January to at least 30 months in prison for child sexual abuse as a Catholic priest, was defrocked by the Vatican. Source: CNN, 3-15-19
Mark Hession was placed on leave from duties in the Diocesan Tribunal of the Catholic Diocese of Fall River, MA, “because of conduct inconsistent with standards of ministerial behavior and in direct violation of the Code of Conduct for priests,” a statement said. Hession was pastor at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Parish in Seekonk until August 2018 when the diocese determined he had used church money on personal expenses. Parishioners also objected to “inappropriate communications” they said Hession sent them. Source: WCVB, 3-11-19
Thomas Dunavan, Falls City, NE, was placed on leave as pastor of Sts. Peter and Paul Catholic Church during investigation of allegations of sexual misconduct dating back about 20 years. Source: KSNB, 3-10-19
Daniel O’Hare was put on leave as pastor of Catholic parishes in Montgomery and Maybrook, NY, due to an allegation he molested a minor in the 1990s. O’Hare was ordained in 1965 by the late Cardinal Francis Spellman. Source: Times Herald-Record, 3-5-19
Miguel Flores, Bakersfield, CA, was placed on leave as pastor of St. Joseph Catholic Church during reinvestigation of sexual abuse claims involving a girl who was then 16. “The current allegation relates to a previous allegation of sexual abuse of a minor that was litigated in 2002, at which time Fr. Flores was acquitted,” Diocese of Fresno spokeswoman Teresa Dominguez said. “The current disclosure is considered credible which gave cause to reopen a diocesan investigation into the matter.”
A jury in 2002 found Flores not guilty of 3 counts each of forcible rape and sex with a minor and single counts of making threats and intimidating a witness. It was alleged he raped a San Joaquin girl who worked as his office assistant at churches in Tranquillity and Hanford. Source: bakersfield.com, 3-4-19
Carsten Martensen, Ithaca, NY, had his chaplain privileges revoked by Cornell University during investigation by the Jesuits USA Northeast Province of an allegation of sexual abuse of a minor in the 1970s. Martensen has worked in campus ministries for Cornell and Ithaca College since 2007 and has an “affiliated” chaplaincy with the Cornell Catholic Community. Source: Daily Sun, 3-3-19
Joseph E. Bradley, Owensboro, KY, was suspended by the Diocese of Owensboro after an allegation of sexual abuse of a minor while he was principal at Owensboro Catholic High School in the 1980s. He was ordained in 1975 and retired in 2011 and also was team chaplain for the University of Kentucky and University of Louisville men’s basketball teams. Source: WFIE, 3-1-19
Patrick Sullivan, ordained in 1982, was placed on leave as pastor of Catholic Churches in Hawley and Dilworth, MN, after an incident the Diocese of Crookston called “a boundary issue” with a minor that was not sexual or criminal. The diocese defines a boundary issue as language or actions “that would serve to benefit the needs of the giver rather than to serve the needs of the receiver.”
Sullivan was placed on leave in 2016 after a civil suit alleged he abused a 15-year-old boy while working at St. Mary’s Mission Church in Red Lake in 2008 and was reinstated after a diocesan review board deemed the allegation “not credible.” Source: Grand Forks Herald, 3-1-19
The Vatican permanently expelled Mauricio Víquez, 54, from the clergy, announced the Archdiocese of San José, Costa Rica. Víquez has been accused of molesting at least 9 minors and is a fugitive from justice believed to be in Mexico. Source: Tico Times, 2-26-19
An unidentified employee at Community Bible Church in San Antonio was fired after confessing to inappropriate text messaging with at least 8 boys in the youth ministry program, said lead pastor Ed Newton. Police are investigating. Source: KSAT, 2-24-19
Robert Gaudio, Chili, NY, was put on leave as pastor of St. Christopher’s Catholic Church during investigation of a recently received allegation of sexual misconduct with a minor in 1979. Gaudio, who was ordained in 1974, denies the allegation.
A statement from the alleged victim said he was a 14-year-old altar boy at St. Andrew’s Parish at the time: “Eventually, he started touching me like a friend would, putting his arm around me, that sort of thing. Then it progressed. He eventually started doing things to me that made me feel embarrassed, ashamed and hurt. I didn’t know what to do. I felt it was wrong. I finally resisted him, which was hard to do. How can you resist God’s representative on Earth? When I did, he immediately lost interest in me as an altar boy and as a friend. He terminated me as an altar boy.” Source: WHAM, 2-24-19
The names of former Milwaukee archbishops William Cousins and Rembert Weakland are being removed from buildings as part of the Catholic Church’s response wto clergy sexual abuse. The archdiocese admits that both men reassigned priests after claims of sexual abuse of minors were substantiated.
The Archbishop Cousins Catholic Center in downtown Milwaukee houses parish offices. Weakland’s name will be removed from the Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist pastoral center. Source: AP, 3-19-19
Wojciech Polak, the Catholic primate of Poland, announced a total of 382 priests abused minors from 1990 to mid-2018. The figure includes 198 priests who molested minors under age 15 and 184 who abused victims between the ages of 15 and 18. Polak expressed “pain, shame and the sense of guilt that such situations happened.” Source: USA Today, 3-14-19
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