SNAP Calls on the Diocese of Steubenville to Release an Updated List of Accused Priests
In late 2018, the Diocese of Steubenville publicly named 16 priests that have been removed from their duties due to “credible” allegations of sexual abuse. Now, we are calling on them to update their list to include the names of twelve additional abusers who spent time in the Diocese of Steubenville.
Earlier this week, SNAP sent a letter to Vicar General Fr. James Dunfee at the Diocese of Steubenville to forward to Bishop Jeffrey Monforton. In that letter, we urged Bishop Monforton to update his list of accused clerics to include the twelve additional names of accused clergy – including one nun – listed below.
It is imperative that church officials in Steubenville make these names public because each of these alleged abusers worked in the Steubenville diocese and they could have sexually abused others there. Naming abusers publicly not only helps to prevent future cases of abuse, but can also help victims of these clerics to know that they are not alone.
Below is a copy of the list of the twelve publicly identified abusers:
Deacon Rosendo F. “Ross” Decal, a Cuba native who worked in the Pittsburgh diocese and was charged with “child pornography, unlawful contact with a minor and criminal use of communications” in April 2018. In 1960s and 1970s, Decal taught at Steubenville Catholic Central High.
Carl Anthony Peltz, a Steubenville priest who also worked as a Navy chaplain from 1983-1990 and who was later "incardinated" and worked in the Kalamazoo diocese. In 1985 in Iceland, Fr. Peltz allegedly forced a 12 year old boy to drink whiskey and raped him. A civil suit filed in 1991 in federal court charged that Steubenville church officials should have known the priest had a drinking problem, yet it certified him as fit for service. That case settled for $25,000 in 1993. Fr. Peltz died in 2015.
John Patrick Bertolucci, an Albany NY priest who worked at Steubenville University for at least nine years, from 1979-1988. The priest admitted sexually abusing teenagers in the 1970s. Church officials permanently removed his faculties in 2002. A lawsuit that same year alleged that Fr. Bertolucci told the parents of the alleged victim that "I was very proud of your son the way he repeatedly fought off my sexual advances most of the time."
Christopher Pliauplis, who started his career as a religious order brother in Steubenville and was later ordained a priest for the diocese. In 1991, he was transferred to the Rockville Centre diocese in New York, purportedly to be near his ailing mother. Fr. Pliauplis was then sent briefly to the Brooklyn diocese and then to the New York archdiocese. The priest was accused of inappropriately touching a 17-year-old boy in 2006 on Staten Island. That same year, he was put on leave and his faculties were removed by church authorities. Fr. Pliauplis appealed the decision to the Vatican and in 2008, a church court in Rome cleared him. Later that year, he was returned to ministry at St. Patrick's Cathedral where he worked until at least 2011. Since 2012, he has been listed in the Official Catholic Directory as ‘on leave.’
Clemens M. Schlueter, a Steubenville diocesan priest who was transferred to the Tucson diocese in 1978 and retired in 1990. In 2002, church officials disclosed that Fr. Schlueter had been suspended from ministry in 1997 after they had learned of an allegation of child sexual abuse.
Francis F. Maloney, who started his career in Steubenville, was sent to Florida where he was removed from a parish there in 2002 after 17 year old accused him of acting inappropriately around him. The teen said he found Fr. Maloney in bed with another man and that the priest would walk around his home nude while the youth was there. No criminal charges filed but the teen filed a civil suit in 2003. It settled in 2004 for less than $1 million. Fr. Maloney admitted to a long-term, "sporadic" sexual relationship with the other priest.
Samuel Tiesi, who worked at Franciscan University from 1978 until 1992 and then again from 1997 until his death in 2001. The school acknowledged that it “has received a report giving reasonable cause to believe that, in the 1990s, he “made unwelcome sexual advances toward a female student.”
Mark Froehlich, who in May of 2018 was removed from active ministry after the Steubenville diocese wrote to his parishioners announcing that it had received a 'credible' allegation of sexual abuse against him. In addition to many parish assignments, he was a teacher at Guernsey Catholic Central High School in Cambridge 1972-1977 and a chancery official, including a stint as dean and a long tenure as a judge in the tribunal. He was also finance officer of the St. Vincent de Paul Society in Barnesville and prominent in the Rotary Club.
Sister Lisa Zuccarell Accused Dominican Sisters Member of the Dominican Sisters of Peace, first assigned in 1975. In 7/18 a woman alleged that Zuccarelli molested her in 1982 when she was a student at Fisher Catholic High School in Lancaster. The Order removed Zuccarelli from ministry and restricted her from unsupervised contact with minors and former students. Zuccarelli taught at Fisher High 1980-85. Prior to that she was a teacher at Desales High 1975-77 and Catholic Central High in Steubenville 1978-80. Taught at Georgetown University's School of Nursing 1995-99, chaplain there at St. Mary's Hall and Darnall Hall 1996-2002. Director of academic enrichment and student life until 2003. Professor at Salve Regina University in RI from 2003 until her 2018 removal. The Order deemed the allegation credible.
Vincent Inghilterra Ordained a priest of the Trenton, NJ diocese in 1972. There he did some parish work, and from sometime in the 1970s until 1984 he was assigned Trenton State Teachers' College. From 1984 on he served outside of NJ as an Army Chaplain, retiring in 2010. Inghilterra professed vows as a San Damiano Franciscan in 2008; in 2010 he accepted a position as Director of the Priestly Discernment Program at the Franciscan University of Steubenville, OH. Inghilterra was accused in a lawsuit settled in May 2013 of having sexually abused a minor in the 1970s while at the Trenton State Teacher's College. A review board deemed the accusation credible. Inghilterra was suspended from ministry "anywhere", according to a Trenton diocese official.
- John/Conrad McGuire Franciscan T.O.R named publicly as credibly accused by Franciscan University in 4/19. "Friar John McGuire, formerly Gather Conrad McGuire." Laicized in 1988.
Friar Simeon Daniel Mulkern
(SNAP, the Survivors Network, has been providing support for victims of sexual abuse in institutional settings for 30 years. We have more than 25,000 survivors and supporters in our network. Our website is SNAPnetwork.org)