Press Release



Press Release


The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests

SNAP Press Release
Giving Voice to Victims


For immediate release:
November 27, 2005

Alleged Abusive Clerics Who Worked at Mary Star of the Sea Catholic Church in San Pedro, CA

At least seven accused abusive priests have worked at this one parish. At least four of the accused predators allegedly molested dozens of girls.

Some of the archdiocese's most prominent clerics, including Msgr. Richard A. Loomis, former head of clergy who oversaw misconduct allegations against priests is accused of abusing teenage boy.

Father Michael Stephen Nocita worked at Mary Star of the Sea despite church officials’ admission that they knew Nocita had a “problem” in the seminary before ordaining him into the priesthood and assigning him to the parish. Two women have filed civil lawsuits against the Los Angeles Archdiocese for covering up his alleged crimes.,1,3303571.story?coll=la-news-religion

Father George Neville Rucker is accused of molesting dozens of girls. In 2002, Rucker was arrested aboard a cruise ship off Alaska by state troopers at the request of Los Angeles police. Charges against Rucker were later dropped after the U.S. Supreme Court overturned California’s new criminal law that allowed prosecution of child sex crimes in cases where the statute of limitations had already expired.

Monsignor George Scott is accused of molesting at least one girl and boy while working at the parish. Scott’s nephew and high ranking church official, Bishop Patrick Ziemann, is also accused of sexual abuse.

Father Santiago Tamayo along with six other priests is accused of gang raping and impregnating a girl. The victim was then secretly sent to Philippines to give birth to the child. Tamayo initially denied the allegations and left the country. He later returned to the U.S. despite church officials warning him not to return to avoid prosecution. Tamayo publicly apologized to his victim and admitted that he and six other priests raped the girl.

Two other priests, Father Raymond Tepe and Monsignor Patrick O’Dwyer are also accused of molestation and worked at Mary Star of the Sea.

Gary Schoener, a Minneapolis psychologist whose Minneapolis Walk-in Counseling Center has worked on more than 2,000 cases of clerical sex abuse, says the majority of clerical abusers that he and his staff deal with (from several denominations) victimize girls and women. Yet, he says, public perception is that far more males are abused, and that the harm they suffer is more serious than what females experience.

"Women and girls are every bit as much at risk as boys and men," says Schoener. "But the sexual abuse of a boy is treated far more seriously, and is considered a far worse offense. Men are regarded as too strong to be victims; their victimization is somehow more shocking to the public. Women are expected to put up with more.

The group hopes to persuade victims and people who know or suspect abuse to report it to criminal authorities, expose molesters and protect kids and vulnerable adults.

# # #


Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests