Two more clergy child sex abuse victims speak out It’s the first time they’ve publicly discussed their pain In just one week, 4 new victims of SD priest have stepped forward
Two more clergy child sex abuse victims speak out
It’s the first time they’ve publicly discussed their pain
In just one week, 4 new victims of SD priest have stepped forward
Group also ‘outs’ 3 other clerics missing from bishop’s ‘accused’ list
And they urge him to cut two key parts of his new victim pay out plan
SNAP: “Don’t insist that victims meet a deadline & sign away legal rights”
Holding signs and childhood photos at a news conference, two clergy sex abuse victims will
--speak out publicly for the first time about a serial San Diego pedophile priest who sexually abused them, and
--urge others who have been assaulted by clerics to file reports with the state attorney general.
Victims will also prod the bishop to cut two key parts of his new victim pay off program:
--what they call “an arbitrary, callous deadline” by which victims must come forward, and
--a requirement that they sign a commitment to never sue church officials.
They will also
- disclose names and details about three more publicly and credibly accused child molesting clerics who were in San Diego but are NOT on the diocese’s ‘accused’ list and
- prod the local bishop to add those names and reveal more information about proven, admitted and credibly accused priests, nuns, brothers, bishops, monks and seminarians.
TODAY --- Friday, May 24 at 10:45 am
On the sidewalk in front of St. Jude’s Shrine of the West, 1129 S. 38th Street in San Diego
Two southern California women who were sexually abused by a San Diego priest, their Sacramento attorney/psychologist (who has represented hundreds of abuse victims), at least one other local clergy abuse victim and a Missouri priest abuse victim who is the former long time director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests
1) Going on camera, disclosing their identities and speaking publicly for the first time, Cathie Ray and Judith Louise-Woraschek, both from southern California, will disclose how they were sexually abused by a San Diego priest, Msgr. Gregory Sheridan. They are among the four new victims of Msgr. Sheridan who’ve come forward in just one week, which suggests that many more in the San Diego area were hurt by this serial predator.
Msgr. Sheridan is credibly accused of abusing kids at St. Jude’s parish (where he worked from 1954-1970 and St. Peter’s parish in Fallbrook (where he worked from 1970-1983). Sheridan worked in this diocese for 35 years and is on the diocese’s list of credibly accused abusive priests.
(Earlier this month, another woman disclosed her suffering at the hands of Msgr. Sheridan and asked local Catholic officials to reimburse her for decades of therapy she’s had as a result. She too is represented by Dr. George.)
2) At least a dozen Catholic dioceses (including San Diego) have adopted or are adopting what they call ‘victim compensation programs.’ All of them, as best SNAP can tell, offer money to some victims, but only if they a) meet a rigid deadline, and b) sign away any rights to sue church officials later.
These provisions exist only for the comfort and convenience of the Catholic hierarchy, SNAP argues. Bishop McElroy should not impose these ‘rigid and callous’ requirements on already-suffering abuse victims, the group says.
3) SNAP has discovered and is disclosing the identities of two more publicly accused abusive San Diego clerics have been left OFF the official San Diego diocesan ‘accused’ list.
They want these three credibly accused molesters added to Bishop Robert McElroy’s list:
--Fr. William G. Allison, who from 1957-1958 worked at St. Joseph’s Cathedral in San Diego, a parish which then had more than 500 students at two parochial schools. He’s been sued for abuse in at least three states and is on ‘credibly accused’ abusers lists in at least three dioceses: Monterey CA, Gallup NM and Alexandria LA.
Fr. Alison spent time in Arizona, New Mexico, three Colorado (three assignments), Louisiana (seven assignments) and California (at least eight assignments, in Los Angeles, Capitola, Villa Maria del Mar, Aptos, San Diego, Fresno, Monterey and Stephen Place). His last known assignment was in the Alexandria LA diocese.
--Fr. Harold C. Depp, who is accused of sexually abusing an 11-year-old Oceanside child and served eight years in prison in Alaskafor child sex crimes. He was also charged with 40 counts of sexual molestation, sodomy and oral copulation with a minor under 14 inCalifornia but the charges were dropped in 2003 because of a US Supreme Court decision called “Stogner.”
From 1971-1972, he was at St. Charles Priory, which is now called Prince of Peace Abbey, rented apartments in Oceanside, and later lived in Palm Springs. Fr. Depp also worked in the Detroit archdiocese.
--Fr. Michael Higgins, who worked in several California towns: Corona, Riverside, Lake Arrowhead, Chino, Santee, Chula Vista and in San Diego (St. Didacus, St. Therese and Our Mother of Confidence) during the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s. Around 1980, he was accused of soliciting sex in a confessional and in 1982 was sent to Servants of the Paraclete, an institution known for treating priests accused of child sexual abuse.
According to the San Diego diocese, he was removed from the priesthood due to an allegation of misconduct. He denied the allegations and unsuccessfully attempted to sue his bishop and several San Diego church officials. The Vatican defrocked him.
He also spent time in Minnesota, was last in San Diego in 1998, reportedly lived in Palm Springs in 2007 and died in 2016.
(Earlier this month, Dr. George released the names of five other publicly accused clerics who spent time in San Diego but are omitted from McElroy’s list. They are Fr. John Patrick Feeney, Fr. Bernard Waltos, Fr. Louis I. Newman, Fr. Lynn Caffoe and Msgr. James E. Dolan.)
SNAP believes many others are missing and contends that the list should be expanded to include ALL credibly accused child molesting church staff – nuns, seminarians, brothers, monks, bishops, teachers, volunteers and other lay employee – and those who sexually assault or harass vulnerable adults as well.
4) Just weeks ago, Attorney General Xavier Becerra announced an investigation into abuse in California dioceses. Victims are urging “anyone with information or suspicions about clergy sex crimes and cover ups – however old, small, vague or seemingly insignificant it may feel – to contact the AG (https://oag.ca.gov/clergyabuse/complaintClergyAbuse@doj.ca.gov).
SNAP Conference Postponed to September
As cases of COVID-19 continue to dominate the headlines, affect the way we work and play, and force changes to our daily lives, we have decided to postpone the SNAP Annual Conference from July until September. We are now planning to hold the conference from September 25 - 27 and it will still be held in Denver, CO.
In order to help make this change easier, we will be charging only $99 for registration from now through June 30. Stay tuned for updates and register today on our conference page.SNAP Conference Postponed to September