Press Release



Press Release


The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests

SNAP Press Release
Giving Voice to Victims


For immediate release:
Thursday, Feb. 8, 2007

For more information:
Barbara Blaine 312 399 4747,
Barbara Dorris 314 862 7688

Families of Murderous Priests To Speak Out

Clergy Abuse Victims Support Group To Meet in Chicago

Clergy abuse victims will hear from families of three individuals who allegedly lost their lives to murderous abusive Catholic clerics at a conference in Chicago later this month.

The three day regional event will be held February 16-18 at the Crowne Plaza Hotel- Chicago Metro (733 W Madison ). It is sponsored by a support group called SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests.

Loved ones of victims who were allegedly murdered by priests in Wisconsin and Massachusetts and a nun in New York will hold a panel discussion and a news conference. It is the first time the families have come together to speak about their losses and these crimes.

SNAP will highlight at least two other murder cases by Catholic priests, one in Texas and another in Ohio . In the five cases, only one of the accused has been convicted (Fr. Gerald Robinson in Toledo Ohio. He strangled and stabbed a nun to death). In four of the five, the sexual abuse by the alleged killers has been documented.

SNAP believes that violent crimes by abusive clergy is more common than many realize. The day before yesterday, a monk in Omaha tried to commit suicide. Years ago, he murdered his three year old daughter.

Last week, a fugitive Las Vegas priest was arrested for attempted murder, sexual assault and other crimes he committed.

Earlier this month, Orlando police revealed that a Florida priest who'd been quietly suspended under deceptive terms is being investigated for allegedly raping an adult man last fall.

The weekend conference will also include presentations from experts in the field of healing from abuse as well as support group meetings.

Relatives of the following victims will attend and speak at the event:

- Dan O'Connell and James Ellison were shot and killed in 2002 in Hudson WI by Father Ryan Erickson. After police questioned him, Erickson committed suicide. A judge later rule that Erickson committed the two murders. He had also been accused of molesting kids.

- Danny Croteau was murdered in Massachusetts at age 13. Police believe that Fr. Richard R. Lavigne murdered Danny. Lavigne has been repeatedly sued for molesting boys and has been defrocked.

- Gilbert Bonneau's family believes that he was murdered at age 8 in a New York orphanage by a nun after another nun had severely beaten him.

This summer, SNAP will hold its national conference in Washington DC from July 20 to July 22. For more information about either event, please contact the SNAP office at 312-455-1499.


Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests