For immediate release Wednesday, February 12, 2014
Priest who worked in Ohio goes to prison for abuse
Over nearly half century, he was transferred 30 times
Group urges Catholic officials in ten dioceses to “reach out to other victims”
A Catholic priest who worked in Ohio and molested a Cincinnati boy is going to prison.
A US federal court judge in Cincinnati has sentenced Fr. Robert (Bob) Poandl to 7.5 years behind bars for taking a ten year old Ohio boy to Spencer, WV and sexually abusing him in 1991.
Fr. Poandl worked in the Cincinnati diocese at least three times (see below). Catholic officials transferred him about 30 times in 44 years.
“That alone is a serious red flag,” said Judy Jones of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, a Chicago-based support group. “A number of bishops and other church officials have acted dreadfully in this case, even in recent years, despite this victim's credible abuse report, Catholic officials put Fr. Poandl back on the job as recently as 2012.”
“This brave victim and his family should be praised for their courage and their determination,” said Jones. “Their compassion and bravery has put this child predator in jail and away from innocent children. It was a long ordeal, but they did not give up.”
“We fear there could be many others who have been hurt by Fr. Poandl and are still suffering in silence and shame,” she emphasized “Victims often stay trapped and quiet unless they're gently but firmly encouraged to speak up, get help, expose wrongdoers, protect kids and start healing. That’s what bishops in each diocese where Fr. Poandl worked should have done years ago and should do now.”
SNAP is calling on Catholic officials to:
--visit each parish where Fr. Poandl worked and beg anyone who may have knowledge of or suspicions about clergy sex crimes or cover ups – involving Fr. Poandl or other priests - to contact police, and
--post his guilty verdict and sentence on parish and diocesan web sites and in diocese newspapers and church bulletins.
Fr. Poandl belongs to a Fairfield Ohio-based Catholic religious order called the Glenmary Missioners and also had church assignments in PA, TX, KY, LA, MS, OK, GA., and WV.
In June 2009, his church supervisors suspended Fr. Poandl from three Georgia parishes because of child sex abuse allegations.
In Sept 2010, those church officials put Fr. Poandl back on the job at the same three parishes.
In Feb. 2012, they suspended him again, allegedly because of a second abuse allegation.
In August 2012, a third child sex abuse allegation was made against Fr. Poandl.
In November 2012, he was indicted on federal charges, and in November 2013, Fr. Poandl was found guilty after a jury trial.
“Because Fr. Poandl was in ministry so long at so many places - as recently as 2012 -there could be even more recent victims,” said David Clohessy of SNAP. “So we think he might be charged elsewhere for more crimes. And we suspect that some of his church superiors or colleagues might be charged with crimes too, like endangering kids, destroying evidence, obstructing justice, tampering with witnesses and the like. But first, others who saw, suspected or suffered these crimes or cover ups must step forward and call police.”
His photo and detailed work history are here:
Fr. Poandl was in at least ten dioceses:
From 1968-1973 at St. Francis in Aberdeen, St. Helen's in Armory, Immaculate Heart of Mary in Houston, St. Theresa's in Okolona, Christ the King in Fulton MS
From 1973-1974 at Mifflintown/Doylesburg PA
3--New Orleans archdiocese
From 1974-1975 at Glenmary House of Studies in New Orleans
From 1975-1979, 1988-1994, 2003-2007, and 2009-2010 at Motherhouse of Glenmary Home Missions in Fairfield
From 1979-1988 at St. Luke's in Dahlonega, St. Paul the Apostle in Cleveland, St. Francis of Assisi in Blairsville, U.S. Ranger Camp in Dahlonega, St. Francis of Assisi in Blairsville, St. Paul the Apostle in Cleveland
From 1994-1999 at Holy Cross in Pittsburg TX
From 1999-2003 at Immaculate Conception in Hugo, St. Jude in Boswell, OK
From 2007-2009 and 2010-2012 at St. Christopher's in Claxton, St. Jude in Glenville, Holy Cross in Pembroke, Our Lady of Guadalupe in Sandhill, GA
In 1991 at Holy Redeemer Catholic Church in Spencer, WV.
(SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, is the world’s oldest and largest support group for clergy abuse victims. We’ve been around for 25 years and have more than 15,000 members. Despite the word “priest” in our title, we have members who were molested by religious figures of all denominations, including nuns, rabbis, bishops, and Protestant ministers. Our website is SNAPnetwork.org)
Contact - David Clohessy (314-566-9790 cell, SNAPclohessy@aol.com), Barbara Dorris (314-862-7688 home, 314-503-0003 cell, SNAPdorris@gmail.com), Joelle Casteix (949-322-7434, email@example.com), Judy Jones (314-974-5003, SNAPjudy@gmail.com)