Laicized Priest found to be a credentialed Marriage and Family Therapist; SNAP reacts

SNAP has recently learned that a former priest, Andrew Gabriel Encinas, who worked in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles, is now listed as a Marriage and Family therapist in Pomona, CA. Encinas is named on the Archdiocese of Los Angeles website as a cleric with “substantiated” allegations of sexual misconduct with a child followed by removal from the clerical state.    

Encinas is now listed as working for Tri-City Mental Health Center in Pomona. He is also credentialed through the State of California.  


We want to know whether the Archdiocese shared their information with Tri-City Mental Health and if Tri-City is aware of the allegations of misconduct for which Encinas was removed? Even more important, how does the State of California conduct background checks on individuals who apply to become licensed therapists? Do background checks involve cross-checking of diocesan abusive clergy lists? If not, it should. 

Accused perpetrators who have escaped criminal prosecution due to the statute of limitations will often fall back on their fields of knowledge and degrees to find employment in social services. As we well know, social service agencies work with vulnerable children and adults.  

SNAP also wants to know what information the Archdiocese provides to prospective employers about “credible” child sex abuse allegations against current or former Archdiocesan priests? Encinas apparently relied on his authority to abuse others and now he is once again in an authoritative role with vulnerable people.

Andrew Gabriel Encinas was ordained in 1990 and he reportedly resigned his priesthood in 1998 and was laicized in 2010. 

CONTACT:  Mike McDonnell, SNAP Communications Manager ([email protected], 267-261-0578), Zach Hiner, SNAP Executive Director ([email protected], 517-974-9009)

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