Fresno diocese hesitates on naming priests accused of sex crimes

Unlike other California dioceses, Fresno remains undecided on naming names

Bishop Ochoa of Fresno

Bishop Armando X. Ochoa is working with a review board to determine what information the Roman Catholic Diocese of Fresno may release about area priests accused of sexual misconduct, including the possibility of publicly identifying those priests by name.

Teresa Dominguez, chancellor for the Diocese of Fresno, said Ochoa in early September raised the issue with the Fresno Diocesan Review Board. The board is made up of members that come from diverse professional backgrounds, such as law enforcement, education, social work and victim psychological services.

It remains unclear how much longer those discussions will take before a conclusion is reached on what to release and when.

“This is a very thoughtful process that will also include discussions that take place within the California Catholic Conference of Bishops and the United States Catholic Conference of Bishops,” she said. “Both meetings are taking place this fall.”

On the heels of the Pennsylvania grand jury report, dioceses in California and in other parts of the country announced plans to release the names of priests accused of sexual abuse.

Cheryl Sarkisian, who works for the Diocese of Fresno and also sits on the review board, said they are still in the “pondering phase.”

“We want due process to happen,” she said.

Full story at The Fresno Bee.

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Comments

  1. We may all be long dead before the Bishops decide on standards for releasing names and other information about priests with credible accusations of child sex crimes. I believe standards should be mandatory nationwide. Once standards are set [sooner rather than later], the Dioceses would have no more than ninety calendar days to release the information. I am almost certain they already know who the ‘bad guys’ are.
    My only caveat is there should be a review process to be sure those cleared of accusations are NOT identified.

  2. Bishop Ochoa can “ponder” all he wants, but soon it’ll no longer be his option. On Oct. 18, the U.S. Department of Justice subpoenas to Pennsylvania dioceses in a state-wide move by federal authorities to investigate sexual abuse of minors by Catholic clergy. DOJ subpoenas could also be launched in other states, as state-led investigations into clerical sexual abuse are currently underway in several states including Maryland, Michigan, Nebraska, New Jersey, Missouri, and New York.
    https://www.catholicnewsagency.com/news/federal-agents-serve-subpoenas-to-pennsylvania-dioceses-64661

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