Former Catholic priest Craig Harrison appears on Fresno's list of "credibly accused" clergy, SNAP calls for release of records
The former Monsignor Craig Harrison's name appears on the list of "credibly accused" clerics recently released by the Diocese of Fresno. Harrison has vigorously denied the allegations against him, even filing lawsuits for defamation against some of his accusers. We call on Catholic officials in Fresno to release the findings that landed the former Monsignor on their list. We believe this information is critical to help survivors and the communities where Harrison worked to heal.
Despite Harrison’s name appearing on the Diocesan list, criminal charges were never filed against him because of the statute of limitations. However, we find it notable that the Fresno County District Attorney's Office also deemed the accusations against the former Monsignor "credible." We know from studies that false allegations of child sexual abuse are rare, and multiple false allegations are even rarer.
If the Diocese would be transparent about their findings, in this case, we believe it would not only answer the important questions about who in the Church knew what, when they knew it, and what they did with this information, it would also go a long way toward ending the divisions created in the communities where Harrison worked. We know that a California Superior Court judge ordered the Diocese of Fresno to produce Harrison’s priest personnel file in November of 2019.
We always believe in survivors, and we are inspired by the strength of those men who have come forward with accusations against Harrison, and the tenacity they have shown while seeking truth and justice in Fresno. We encourage anyone who has suffered abuse, or anyone with knowledge of abuse, by Catholic clergy, brothers, nuns, lay employees, or volunteers in the Diocese of Fresno to report to law enforcement directly.
CONTACT: Mike McDonnell, SNAP Communications Manager ([email protected], 267-261-0578), Melanie Sakoda, SNAP Survivor Support Coordinator ([email protected], 925-708-6175), Zach Hiner, SNAP Executive Director (517-974-9009, [email protected]), Dan McNevin, SNAP Treasurer ([email protected], 415-341-6417)
(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)