Roster of Press Releases


The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests

SNAP Press Release

Sex abuse victims disclose $600,000 settlement

It's believed to be the highest ever in Mid-Missouri

Catholic priest was convicted of molesting a kid in NJ

Then, church quietly moved him to unsuspecting Boonville parish

In between, he legally changed his name & was sent to treatment center

Self help group blasts church officials in both states for 'secrecy and callousness'

SNAP begs others who were sexually assaulted, by him or other clerics, to 'come forward'

At two sidewalk news conferences, clergy sex abuse victims will disclose
-- mid-Missouri's largest ever pedophile priest settlements, and
-- the identity of the predator never before publicly exposed.

They will also
-- harshly criticize Missouri and New Jersey Catholic officials for secretly moving the cleric to an unsuspecting rural Missouri community, despite his criminal conviction for molesting in New Jersey, and
-- beg anyone who saw, suspected or suffered his crimes or misdeeds to get help and call police, so that the child molester might be prosecuted and so that kids might be better protected.

Thursday, Aug. 13

At 11:15 a.m. - in Columbia outside the Newman Center, 701 Maryland Avenue, Columbia
At 1:15 p.m. - in Jefferson City diocese headquarters, 2207 West Main Street (between Binder Dr. & Forest Hill Ave.)

A Columbia attorney and a former mid-Missouri man who was molested by a Jefferson City Diocese priest and who now heads a support group called SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (

Born in 1945, Carmine C. Sita was ordained a priest in 1976. In the 1980s, Sita was convicted of sexually abusing a boy in New Jersey. He was then sent to a church-run center for pedophile priests in New Mexico, legally changed his name to Gerald Howard, and was sent to work in the Jefferson City Diocese.

From 1983-88, Howard repeatedly sexually violated a teenage boy who belonged to Saints Peter and Paul Parish in Boonville (though some of the crimes took place on trips to Columbia, New York and elsewhere).

After a mediation in late June in St. Louis, the victim agreed to a $600,000 settlement from three defendants - the Jefferson City diocese (where Howard was sent), the Newark archdiocese (where Howard is from), and a religious order, the St. Louis-based Paracletes, a religious order (where Howard was 'treated' between diocesan assignments).

After being ousted from his Boonville parish, Howard moved to Columbia and lived off Lake of the Woods Road for several years. It is believed that he took counseling courses at the University of Missouri. For six years (1976-1982), Howard worked at St. Aloysius Catholic Church in Jersey City NJ. (691 West Side Ave., 201-433-6365). For a while, he attended Rutgers University.

Now in his 60s, Howard remains a priest, though he's allegedly not working in a parish and his whereabouts are not known. As part of the settlement, the victim insisted that church officials begin defrocking Howard.

The settlement is believed to be among the four or five largest ever among clergy sex cases in Missouri.

The victim is in his 30s, married and lives in Roanoke VA now. (He will NOT be at the news conference) He is represented by attorneys Ken Chackes of St. Louis (314 872 8420, 314 369 3902 cell) and Bryan Bacon of Columbia (573-874-7777). Current staff at Sts. Peter & Paul parish include Pastor Robert

Duesdieker (660-882-6468, 660-882-8528) and Sr. Nadine Flott (660-882-5304). Attorneys representing the defendants include Jeffrey Jones (for the Paracletes, 505-466-3426), Charles Carella (for the Newark diocese, 973-994-1700), Lucie Huger, Bernard Huger, & Ed Goldenhersh (for Jeff City diocese, 314-241-9090).

David Clohessy 314 566 9790 cell, Barbara Dorris 314 862 7688 home, 314 503 0003 cell

Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests