Media Statements

MN - SNAP calls for grand jury probe of archdiocese

For immediate release: Monday, Sept. 23

Statement by David Clohessy of St. Louis, Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 566 9790, SNAPclohessy@aol.com)

It seems clear that at least three top Catholic officials hid, tampered with, or tried to tamper with evidence in a recent clergy sex abuse case. In light of this, we call on Minnesota prosecutors to open a grand jury investigation into the St. Paul-Minneapolis archdiocese’s handling of clergy sex crimes.

A lengthy Minnesota Public Radio story details how high-ranking staff of the St. Paul-Minneapolis archdiocese kept Fr. Curtis C. Wehmeyer on the job despite “repeated troubling actions by and allegations against” the priest. 

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OH - Predator priest found guilty; SNAP responds

For immediate release: Friday, Sept. 20, 2013                                                             

Statement by David Clohessy of St. Louis, Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 566 9790, SNAPclohessy@aol.com)

We are grateful that Fr. Robert Poandl has been found guilty to sexually abusing a 10 year old boy. However, we are worried that he may receive such a light sentence.

We are especially grateful to this brave victim and his family. Their courage to speak up, their wisdom to seek justice and their patience to endure delays has been heroic. Because of their compassion and determination, this dangerous predator will always be publicly known as a child molester.

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PA - Scranton priest arrested; SNAP responds

For immediate release: Friday, Sept. 20, 2013

Statement by David Clohessy of St. Louis, Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 566 9790, SNAPclohessy@aol.com)

After arranging the meeting on Craig’s List, a Scranton priest was arrested last night with a teenager in his car. 

http://thetimes-tribune.com/news/old-forge-priest-charged-with-sex-crimes-against-teen-met-through-craigslist-1.1555722

Starting this Sunday, Scranton’s bishop should go to each parish where Fr. Reverend William Jeffery Paulish worked, begging anyone who may have any information on suspicions about this situation to call police or prosecutors.

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MN - New MN bishop named; SNAP responds

For immediate release: Friday, Sept. 20, 2013

Statement by David Clohessy of St. Louis, Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 566 9790, SNAPclohessy@aol.com)  

Fairbanks Bishop Donald Kettler has been named to head the St. Cloud Minnesota diocese. We’re disappointed by this choice.

Kettler graduated from St. John’s in St. Cloud, a dreadfully abuse-ridden institution. For a decade he’s run a scandal-ridden diocese. (There are 45 proven, admitted and credibly accused child molesting Fairbanks clerics, according to BishopAccountability.org) We’ve seen no signs that Kettler has learned from these experiences and handles child sex crimes any differently than most of his peers, who continue to put their careers above the well-being of their flocks.

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IL - Ex Granite City priest suspended over sex abuse

Victims blast bishop over ‘delay, secrecy & deception’

For immediate release: Friday, Sept. 20, 2013

Statement by David Clohessy of St. Louis, Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 566 9790, SNAPclohessy@aol.com)

A week after returning a troubled priest back on the job in Alton, Springfield’s Catholic bishop is letting another priest – who worked in Granite City - temporarily resign because he’s accused of child sex crimes. But the bishop kept the accusation secret for weeks. And the bishop continues to use misleading language and doing the bare minimum.

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Pope’s new comments don’t protect kids, SNAP says

For immediate release: Friday, Sept. 20, 2013 

Statement by David Clohessy of St. Louis, Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 566 9790, SNAPclohessy@aol.com)

Pope Francis continues to make comments and gestures that show compassion and a willingness to break old, unhealthy church patterns. And he makes millions of Catholics feel better.

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/09/20/world/europe/pope-bluntly-faults-churchs-focus-on-gays-and-abortion.html?hp&_r=0

But it's time for him to bring these traits to bear on the crisis that even he refuses to deal with – the church’s on-going and rampant child sex abuse and cover up crisis.

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IL - Victims blast Springfield bishop over ‘delay, secrecy & deception’

For immediate release: Thursday, Sept. 19, 2013

Statement by David Clohessy of St. Louis, Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 566 9790, SNAPclohessy@aol.com)

A week after returning a troubled priest back on the job, Springfield’s Catholic bishop is letting another priest who’s accused of child sex crimes temporarily resign. But the bishop sat on the accusation for weeks, keeping it secret. And the bishop continues to use misleading language and doing the bare minimum.

http://www.sj-r.com/breaking/x1837087565/Former-Jacksonville-priest-being-investigated

Today, Bishop Thomas Paprocki temporarily let Fr. Robert “Bud” DeGrand resign from his posts at Catholic parishes in Sigel, Neoga, Green Creek and Lillyville.

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ARG - Predator priest is “a step closer to prison,” SNAP responds

For immediate release: Thursday, Sept. 19, 2013

Statement by Barbara Dorris of St. Louis, Outreach Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 862 7688 home, 314 503 0003 cell, SNAPdorris@gmail.com)

A high profile priest, suspected of molesting kids more than a decade ago, is now one step closer to being imprisoned. While we applaud this move, we’re appalled that this criminal has tied up the court system with a seven year trial and 200 hearings over 11 years while spending only one month behind bars despite sexually assaulting at least two boys. 

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AR - Catholic teacher guilty of hiding child sex crimes; SNAP responds

For immediate release: Wednesday, Sept. 18, 2013

Statement by Barbara Dorris of St. Louis, Outreach Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 862 7688 home, 314 503 0003 cell, SNAPdorris@gmail.com)

Today, an ex-Catholic school teacher has been found guilty of failing to report suspected child sex crimes. Yesterday, another ex-Catholic school teacher pled guilty to violating her probation by repeatedly contacting the girl she molested.

As a result, kids in both Arkansas (where the crimes happened) and Florida (where the predator has been living) are both safer. And we hope that these actions, especially today’s verdict, will deter future cover ups of child sex crimes.

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MO - In rare move, archbishop & aide are deposed; SNAP responds

For immediate release: Wednesday, Sept. 18, 2013

Statement by Barbara Dorris of St. Louis, Outreach Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 862 7688 home, 314 503 0003 cell, SNAPdorris@gmail.com)

Tomorrow, for what we believe will be the first time ever, prosecutors will depose St. Louis’ highest ranking Catholic official (and one of his top aides) in a troubling, recent child sex abuse case.

http://stlouis.cbslocal.com/2013/09/18/st-louis-archbishop-to-testify-in-priest-abuse-case/

We believe it’s the first time any St. Louis archbishop has been deposed in any clergy sex case – criminal or civil. Nationally, it’s rare that members of the church hierarchy are deposed in these cases and even more rare when it’s a criminal case. 

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MO - Files released on two predator priests

For more information:  David Clohessy (314) 566-9790 cell, SNAPclohessy@aol.com, Barbara Dorris (314) 862-7688, SNAPdorris@gmail.com

Files released on two predator priests

Each abused in CA but spent time in MO

They’re with a St. Louis-based religious order

But each worked in the Cape Girardeau diocese

Victims blast MO Catholic officials for “continued secrecy

SNAP to prelates: “Reach out to others who may be in pain

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CA - New San Diego Catholic bishop is named SNAP responds

For immediate release: Wednesday, Sept. 18, 2013

Statement by David Clohessy of St. Louis, Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 566 9790, SNAPclohessy@aol.com)

The Vatican has announced that Bishop Cirilo Flores is the new head of the San Diego diocese. We’re disappointed and worried by this move.

http://visnews-en.blogspot.com/2013/09/other-pontifical-acts_18.html

Flores spent years in the Diocese of Orange, a diocese with a very troubling track record in concealing crimes and endangering kids. For more than a decade, he was on a small panel there dealing with clergy sex crimes and cover ups. Flores did little or nothing that showed any real courage or compassion.

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