Third accusation leads to the arrest of a Staten Island priest now charged for molesting a minor

The Rev. James Garisto, 73, who spent nearly 40 years as a priest, teacher, and school administrator in the Archdiocese of New York, was arrested Thursday and charged with endangering the welfare of children, corruption of minors, and indecent assault.

Garisto, who owned a home in the Fishtown neighborhood of Philadelphia at the time of the assaults, is accused of attacking the child hundreds of times. He was released from police custody Thursday after posting 10% of his $75,000 bail and purportedly lives in Harrisburg, Pa.

Fr. Garisto was in the public eye in 2015 when he was abruptly removed as pastor of St. Adalbert – St. Roch parish in North Shore Staten Island. The Archdiocese of New York should disclose to the community the reasons why Fr. Garisto abruptly left his position and where he is now. Catholic officials frequently assert that they have concern for victims and yet refuse to release information that would help survivors heal and inform the public about dangerous men. On leave from the Archdiocese of New York since August of 2019, Garisto faces legal action in New York. This new allegation marks the third time that Garisto has been accused of sexual assault and we believe that there may be many more victims.

In August of 2021, SNAP shared the story of Ryan Barry, a husband, and father living now in Pennsylvania, making the details of the abuse he suffered very public in an interview with Staten Island Live news outlet. Ryan accuses Fr. James Garisto of abuse that began when Ryan was a teenager in the 1990s. The clergyman was at the time a pastor, teacher, and school official at St. Joseph by-the-Sea High School. 

We stand with the brave victim who has come forward to police regarding the alleged abuse suffered in Philadelphia. We hope this news encourages anyone who has suffered sexual abuse at the hands of a trusted person to come forward to report to authorities, it is never too late.

We also hope the wheels of justice move swiftly in this case and that the alleged abuser is finally judged and removed from ever harming a child ever again. 

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

 (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

Showing 4 comments

  • Philip Kaiser
    commented 2022-06-26 08:42:34 -0500
    Thank you linda
  • Linda Eagleton
    commented 2022-06-26 07:35:43 -0500
    As a former parishioner of St Peters parish and our lady of the rosary I am deeply concerned for the children that garisto came in contact with. He took that parish in and said to help raise more money, that he fired his maid for the rectory. This is incredible and horrible to think about in light of the credible allegations that have come forward against garisto. I pray for the victims/survivors.
  • Philip Kaiser
    commented 2022-04-22 07:39:10 -0500
    Fuck you Lee Ptasienski I am a victim of this scumbag, the fact that you would offer to Harbor him shows how disgusting of person you really are. I truly hope you do not have any teenage boys that this quote family member of yours is in contact with.
  • Lee Ptasienski
    commented 2022-02-19 10:57:12 -0600
    Father Garisto has been great person in the lives of my whole family. He became like a member of our family for the whole time he was at Saint Peters parish. I’m very concearend because, although I don’t condone what he’s been accused of I just wish there was way of letting him know that I’m here for him if he should need any support.
    Please email me if you have any suggestions. I don’t know if you can tell about my request but if you just tell it’s the Ptasienski family trying to be there for support.
    Thank you,
    Lee Ptasienski

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