Media Statements

OH, IL – Predatory seminarian is sentenced; Sex abuse victims respond

For immediate release: Friday, May 20, 2016

Statement by Melanie Jula Sakoda of Moraga, California, Orthodox Christian Director for SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (925-708-6175melanie.sakoda@gmail.com)

Former seminarian Dario Spasic pleaded guilty this week to one count of indecent solicitation of a child. He was sentenced to probation, and will be required to register as a sex offender for 10 years.

http://www.chicagotribune.com/suburbs/lake-county-news-sun/crime/ct-lns-spasic-sex-sentence-st-0517-20160516-story.html

We had hoped for jail time, since that is the only proven way to stop a predator from hurting children. The former seminarian is a relatively young man. We firmly believe that he will try to harm more kids.

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IL--Admitted predator priest will not be put back to work in Chicago

For immediate release: Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Statement by David Clohessy of St. Louis, Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 566 9790, 314 645 5915 home, davidgclohessy@gmail.com)

An admitted child molesting cleric will NOT be put back on the job in Chicago, his victim was told today via email by an archdiocesan official. (A copy of the email is below.)

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/breaking/ct-chicago-priest-past-abuse-met-20160102-story.html#

Fr. Bruce Wellems admits having repeatedly sexually abused Eric Johnson when Wellems was 15 and Johnson was seven. The Chicago Archdiocese temporarily suspended Fr. Wellems but dragged their feet for months while pondering whether to let the priest work again in Chicago again.

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Guam--Man alleges archbishop molested him as a child, Victims respond

For Immediate Release, May 16, 2016

Statement by Joelle Casteix of Newport Beach, CA, Western Regional Director of SNAP, Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAPNetwork.org) (jcasteix@gmail.com949-322-7434 cell)

We applaud Roy T. Quintanilla, who today bravely stood and told his story of sexual abuse. It is always difficult for survivors to come forward and expose abusers, but when the accused predator is one of the most powerful people in a community, it takes herculean effort and strong support. By coming forward today, Roy has made Guam safer for children, exposed a horrific crime and decades-long cover-up, and began the journey towards healing, for himself and the Catholic community at large.

http://www.guampdn.com/story/news/2016/05/16/man-alleges-archbishop-molested-him/84469094/

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VA--Mennonite Panel recommends investigation

For immediate release: Monday, May 16,2016

Statement by Barbra Graber, SNAP Leader, 540-214-8874, Mennonite@snapnetwork.org

We applaud the recommendation of a Mennonite church panel charged with prevention of sexual abuse to bring in outside investigators to look into the case of an ex-Mennonite university vice president accused of sexual abuse, stalking, threats of violence, and verbal abuses.

http://mennoniteusa.org/news/panel-recommends-investigation/

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OH--Accused predator teacher in court Monday

For immediate release: Friday, May 13, 2016

Statement by David Clohessy of St. Louis, Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 566 9790314 645 5915 home, davidgclohessy@gmail.com)

An ex-teacher at Cleveland's Jefferson Elementary School and Lakewood Catholic Academy, Michael Soderquist, is in court today on child sex charges.

http://www.cleveland.com/akron/index.ssf/2016/04/eastlake_elementary_school_tea.html

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OR--Portland predator priest is guilty; Victims respond

For immediate release: Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Statement by Barbara Dorris of St. Louis, Outreach Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 503 0003 cell, bdorris@SNAPnetwork.org)

An Oregon priest is guilty of trying to lure a girl into his car. Now, Portland’s archbishop and other Catholic officials must aggressively seek out others who may have experienced or ignored or concealed his crimes. And we hope next month he’s locked up for as long as possible

http://www.columbian.com/news/2016/may/10/priest-guilty-of-trying-to-lure-girl/

http://www.bishop-accountability.org/news2014/03_04/2014_04_25_Achen_PriestAppears.htm

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FL--Massage therapist is guilty of battery; Victims respond

For immediate release: Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Statement by Barbara Dorris of St. Louis, Outreach Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 503 0003 cell, bdorris@SNAPnetwork.org)

We are grateful that a judge found an ex-West Boca Massage Envy staffer guilty of battery on a female client. We hope Raymond L. Smith Jr. never again works as a massage therapist and that others with information or suspicions about his crimes will come forward, get help, call police, protect others and deter employers from acting recklessly, callously and deceitfully in such cases.

http://www.wpbf.com/news/judge-rules-guilty-verdict-in-case-involving-west-boca-massage-envy/39472196

We applaud this brave woman for doing her moral and civic duty by reporting Smith to law enforcement. We hope others who may be suffering in silence, shame and self-blame will do likewise.

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PA--Penn State president should resign over abuse remarks

For immediate release: Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Statement by David Clohessy of St. Louis, Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 566 9790314 645 5915 home, davidgclohessy@gmail.com)

Penn State University’s president should resign. If he doesn’t, he should be forced out by university trustees. At a bare minimum, he should be severely disciplined.

He’s making a tragic situation worse by attacking victims, adding to their pain, and discouraging others who are suffering from protecting kids by speaking up and exposing predators.

http://news.psu.edu/story/409338/2016/05/08/president/president-shares-letter-university-community-regarding-recent

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PA--Victims blast Altoona “healing services”

For immediate release: Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Statement by Barbara Dorris of St. Louis, Outreach Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 503 0003 cell, bdorris@SNAPnetwork.org)

In an insulting but shrewd public relations move, Altoona’s bishop is holding self-serving “healing” events instead of protecting kids through decisive action.  http://dioceseaj.org/node/1075

In the 147 page grand jury report, released two months ago, perhaps the most disturbing fact is that the jurors are “concerned the purge of predators is taking too long.”

http://www.cincinnati.com/story/news/2016/03/01/grand-jury-pa-bishops-hid-sex-abuse-hundreds-children/81148778/

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GA--Predator teacher worked in Atlanta area school

For immediate release: Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Statement by Barbara Dorris of St. Louis, Outreach Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 503 0003 cell, bdorris@SNAPnetwork.org)

A predatory teacher who repeatedly abused a student and “allegedly demanded she have two abortions” worked in a suburban Atlanta school, a new report shows.

http://nypost.com/2016/05/08/teacher-who-allegedly-raped-student-landed-job-at-doe-probe/

The secrecy of Catholic officials, who “never disciplined him” but later quietly let him go, allowed him “to work for years in city public schools,” an investigation reveals.

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MD--Victims respond to Baltimore predator priests list

For immediate release:   Monday, May 9, 2016

Statement by Barbara Dorris of St. Louis, Outreach Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 503 0003 cell, bdorris@SNAPnetwork.org)

While we’re glad Baltimore Catholic officials are again listing predator priests on the archdiocesan website but wish they would do the same on local parish websites. We’re sad that this has taken so long to do and believe they can and should do much more to protect kids.

http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/maryland/bs-md-archdiocese-list-priests-20160509-story.html

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PA--Victims urge Penn State fans to “dial it back”

For immediate release: Monday, May 9, 2016

Statement by David Clohessy of St. Louis, Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 566 9790, 314 645 5915 home, davidgclohessy@gmail.com)

Two individuals say they reported child sex crimes by Jerry Sandusky to Joe Paterno decades earlier than has been suspended or documented. We hope this news will cause many in the Penn State community to show some sensitivity and common sense by ending their loud, reflexive and hurtful backing of a once-popular and powerful coach who, like all of us, was just a man with flaws.

http://www.cnn.com/2016/05/06/us/jerry-sandusky-victims-paterno-penn-state/index.html

We deeply admire and appreciate the courage of these victims (and Bernie McCue, a friend of one of them, who has also spoken publicly). It’s heartbreaking that they have been betrayed three times: once by a Penn State coach, again by Penn State officials and a third time by Penn State fans who continue to heap scorn on adults who were sexually violated as kids by Jerry Sandusky.

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