The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests
SNAP Press Statement
For immediate release: Monday, July 12, 2010
West Virginia Priest Arrested; victims respond
Statement by Judy Jones, SNAP Midwest Leader, 314 433 2511
We are grateful that at least one person who was assaulted by this priest is stepping forward and has called police. We suspect that there are still others who were molested by Owino, and hope they too will speak up.
It's the civic and Christian duty of every single person who saw, suspected or suffered this cleric's crimes to call law enforcement. It's irresponsible to stay paralyzed in fear, shame or embarrassment, while a predator goes free for lack of evidence and innocent children are put in harm's way again. Please, we beg you, if you have knowledge or suspicions of Owino’s wrongdoing, call the police now.
(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 22 years and have more than 9,000 members across the country. 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), Barbara Blaine (312-399-4747), Barbara Dorris (314-862-7688 home, 314-503-0003 cell)
W.Va. priest suspended after arrest on sex charge
WHEELING, W.Va. (AP) - The Diocese of Wheeling-Charleston has suspended a priest following his arrest in northern Virginia on a charge of aggravated sexual battery of a minor under 13.
Diocese spokesman Bryan Minor said Monday the church suspended the Rev. Felix C. Owino after confirming he had been arrested July 8 in Fairfax, Va., and was being held in the Fairfax County Adult Detention Center.
A spokesman with the Fairfax County Sheriff's Office said Owino was being held without bond. A hearing is set for Sept. 2.
The diocese spokesman said Owino was serving as an associate pastor at a church in Weirton. He also taught at Wheeling Jesuit University the past two years.
Owino is a member of the Religious Missionary Institute of the Apostles of Jesus based in Northampton, Pa.
Copyright 2010 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.
Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests