The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests
SNAP Press Statement
For immediate release: Monday, March 21, 2011
San Fran priest accused of child sex abuse; SNAP responds
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 Keohane’s victim found the strength to report his crimes and we hope that others who saw, suspected or suffered his misdeeds will come forward. It’s especially important to seek out and confide in trustworthy individuals outside the church, like police, prosecutors, therapists and support groups like ours. When victims, witnesses and whistleblowers speak up, there’s at least a chance for prevention, justice and healing. But when victims, witnesses and whistleblowers stay silent, predators walk free and more kids are hurt.
But often when victims, witnesses and whistleblowers confide in church authorities, instead of civil authorities, cover ups begin or are intensified. So again, we beg anyone with information or suspicions about Keohane – or any cleric – to contact law enforcement officials, not archdiocesan officials.
At the same time, however, we are sad that San Francisco Catholic officials are backtracking from their pledge to be “open” in clergy sex abuse cases, by apparently announcing Keohane’s suspension only to a few hundred current parishioners, instead of to the public. Such a tiny disclosure is hardly honoring the pledge of “transparency” that bishops continually tout but largely ignore.
Most who are victimized leave the church or move elsewhere, at least for a few years. So it’s possible but not likely that current St. Cecilia churchgoers have been sexually assaulted by Keohane. That’s why it’s important that as many people as possible be notified of these credible accusations against him. That’s what San Francisco’s archbishop and other chancery officials should do.
(For more info re the allegations against Keohane, please contact Sacramento attorney Joseph C. George Sr. 916 442 7100 or 916 802 7949 cell)
(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 23 years and have more than 10,000 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)
Contact - David Clohessy (314-566-9790 cell, SNAPclohessy@aol.com), Barbara Blaine (312-399-4747, SNAPblaine@gmail.com), Peter Isely (414-429-7259, email@example.com), Barbara Dorris (314-862-7688 home, 314-503-0003 cell, SNAPdorris@gmail.com)
FATHER KEOHANE PUT ON ADMINISTRATIVE LEAVE
STATEMENT BY BISHOP WILLIAM JUSTICE:
“Last week an allegation of sexual abuse of a young woman surfaced against Father Daniel Keohane, the associate pastor of Saint Cecilia Parish in San Francisco. The alleged abuse took place in the late 1970’s when Father Keohane was assigned to the Church of the Epiphany. The Archdiocese has deemed this allegation to be credible (i.e. warranting further investigation), and thus in accord with Archdiocesan policies for the protection of minors, Father Keohane has been place on immediate administrative leave pending a comprehensive investigation. He has denied the allegation.
Also in accord with Archdiocesan policy, the District Attorney has been informed about this allegation. The Independent Review Board of the Archdiocese has been consulted and will be responsible for an evaluation of the findings and a recommendation of action to the Archbishop once the comprehensive investigation has been completed.
Any other allegations of sexual abuse involving Father Keohane should be directed to the civil authorities, and to Archdiocesan Victim Assistance coordinator, Ms. Barbara Elordi. Her secure phone line is 415-614-5506, and her email is firstname.lastname@example.org . Ms. Elordi is also available to assist with any pastoral concerns that may arise as a result of this matter”. (March 17, 2011)
Monsignor Harriman asks for your prayers for Father Keohane and everyone involved in this unfortunate situation as the comprehensive investigation runs its course. During this time Father Dan will not be involved in priestly ministry.
Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests