FL- Victims seek bishop's help
Victims seek bishop's help
Two predator priests now live in Venice diocese
One was sued for molesting 2 kids in Louisiana
The other one admitted abusing a child in Arizona
Group worries about “unsuspecting neighbors & trusting parents”
They want Catholic officials to “warn police, parishioners and the public”
And they're upset that, just weeks ago, a predator lived on church property
Holding signs and childhood photos at a sidewalk news conference, clergy sex abuse victims and their supporters will:
– disclose that two predator priests who molested kids elsewhere are now quietly living in the Venice Catholic diocese (and one of them is in Ft. Myers)
– blast local Catholic officials for their “continuing recklessness” about clergy sex crimes(including one earlier this month in Ft. Myers), and
– urge anyone who may have seen, suspected or suffered clergy sex crimes and cover ups to report to police officials, not church officials.
Wednesday, Feb. 26 at 1:15 p.m.
On the sidewalk outside the St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church (239-334-2161), 2157 Cleveland Ave. (corner of Victoria) in Ft. Myers FL
Two-three adults who were sexually abused as kids and their supporters. They belong to an independent self-help group called SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, including a Chicago woman who is the organization's founder and president.
1) Earlier this month, Robert Little, a Eucharistic minister at St. Francis Xavier was charged with molesting a child he met through the church. A Ft. Myers television station disclosed that the accused abuser was living on church property and that Venice diocese officials refused to order him to move. Later, church officials reversed their decision.
SNAP is highly critical how diocesan staff handled the case. The group wants Venice Bishop Frank Dewane (941-484-9543, firstname.lastname@example.org) to come to the parish and help police prosecute Little by urging anyone who may have seen, suspected or suffered his crimes to call law enforcement.
2) And SNAP has also learned that two Catholic priests who molested kids elsewhere have quietly moved – or been sent to - to southwest Florida with no apparent warning to parishioners and the public. (One of them has virtually never been publicly accused before.)
SNAP wants Bishop Dewane to alert his flock about both clerics and urge anyone who may have information or suspicions about their crimes to call law enforcement.
One is a Louisiana cleric who apparently lives in Englewood and accused of molesting at least two kids. The other is an Arizona cleric who has twice been in prison for child sex crimes.
--In 2008, the Lafayette Louisiana Catholic diocese settled with two victims of Fr. Marshall Larriviere. Fr. Larriviere, now in his 60s, lives at 1710 Manasota Beach Rd. in Englewood (941-473-3829), in the Venice Catholic diocese.
SNAP will provide copies of three partial court documents and a newspaper article about the settlements. They will also provide copies of some of the many comments that Fr. Larriviere leaves in online funeral guestbooks, in which he continues to identify himself as a priest who still says mass. (Just google "Rev. Marshall Larriviere" in quotes). The latest one is from December 2013.
–--In the 1980s and again in the 2000s, Fr. John Maurice Giandelone served jail time for child sex crimes, according to the Arizona Republic. He has also faced at least three civil abuse suits.
Giandelone, now 67, lives at 11411 Waterford Village Drive in Ft. Myers (239-561-3058). He is on a national sex offender registry:
Regardless of their clerical status, SNAP believes that bishops have a moral and civic duty to warn the public about predator priests, especially those who have moved or been sent away to other states where they live among unsuspecting families. It's wrong, the group contends, for bishops to recruit, educate, ordain, hire, train, transfer and shield child molesting clerics, then suspend them when they're caught and do nothing more to protect the vulnerable from them. So whether a predator priest has been defrocked, suspended is just “AWOL,” and no matter whose payroll he is or was on, SNAP feels bishops must use their resources to protect their flocks, by alerting the public about predators through church websites, parish bulletins and pulpit announcements.
(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)
50 State AG Call for Grand Jury
Any investigation must be:
- independent of and separate from the church
- must have subpoena powers and ability to compel testimony under oath
Anything short of these criteria is a sham and whitewash.
In addition, write letters to the editor, make phone calls to politicians as they can apply pressure to keep them responsive to our demand. We need to make efforts to ensure that they follow up on what the state is doing to investigate these crimes.
The Attorneys General of forty states have inquired about the grand jury process in Pennsylvania. Let's get statewide investigations going in fifty states.
Note to Letter Writers
Use your own words and style of writing. Cut and paste from the templates as you wish. Include your experiences, whether as a survivor or as a member of the community. And relate your letter to the state you were abused in or state now living in.