Fr. David Brusky – Diocese of Santa Rosa

Father David Brusky

Diocese of Santa Rosa (Salvatorian Order)

David Brusky Horowitz LawOrdained: 1952

Suspended: 1988

Dead:  2014

Assignment History:

  • 1952-1954: Doctoral Studies (Rome, Italy)
  • 1956-1970: Missionary Priest (Tanzania, Africa)
  • 1970-1972: Leave of Absence from Priesthood
  • 1972-1973: Our Lady of Snows (Reno, NV)
  • 1974-1974: St. Teresa of Avila (Carson City, NV)
  • 1974-1975: St. Albert the Great (Reno, NV)
  • 1977-1977: Mother of Good Counsel (Milwaukee, WI)
  • 1982-1983: Sonoma State University (Sonoma, CA)
  • 1985-1987: Holy Cross Church (West Sacramento, CA)
  • 1989-1995: Salvatorian Foreign Missions (New Holstein, WI)
  • 1996-1997: Foreign Mission (Tanzania, Africa)

Summary of Sexual Abuse Allegations Against Father David Brusky:

Fr. David Brusky was ordained a priest in 1952, who served in multiple dioceses including in the Diocese of Santa Rosa. According to media reports, he was accused of the molestation and rape of at least six young girls from the ages of 10-13 in Reno, NV, in the 1960s and 70s. While not criminally charged, several anonymous reports of sexual misconduct with young females Fr. Brusky received . While he never admitted to any wrongdoings, Brusky reportedly stated to the Reno Gazette that he was sent to a treatment center for “sexaholics” in the late 1980s.

According to the Reno Gazette, one of Brusky’s victims met Fr. Brusky at her baptism, and her life began to revolve around the church. He became very involved with her family, she recalled, “but soon weird things began to happen,” she states.

Another one of Brusky’s survivors claims she was molested and raped by Fr. Brusky in the 1970s at two Reno churches. She filed a claim in 1989 after undergoing therapy, but the charges were beyond the statute of limitations and were dropped. She didn’t approach the Diocese of Reno about the abuse until 2001, after her younger sister told her for the first time that she had been molested by Brusky, as well. She received a $50,000 settlement from the Diocese of Reno but felt she was misled about the priest’s condition and his access to other children. The bishop she spoke to told her the priest had suffered several strokes, was incapacitated, lived in a secured extended-care facility, and couldn’t communicate. She stated the bishop said Brusky would never be sent to prison “because of his ill health and that his mind was gone.”

A mother of several young women who claim the priest molested them called the facility where Brusky was living. He answered the phone and said he was doing well. Brusky told her that he had gone through rehab and was even able to drive. When asked about allegations made by another woman, who said Brusky molested her in an apple orchard when she was in 5th grade, and another woman who said he molested her in the rectory, Brusky said he could not recall those incidents. He said he remembered the girls but couldn’t recall any molestations. He said his religious Order sent him to a treatment center for “sexaholics” in the 1980s, but he said he didn’t believe he needed help.

The Diocese of Reno first learned of the claims against Brusky in 2001 from the Washoe District Attorney and contacted the woman and her lawyer. The diocese “extended an offer of counseling and spiritual or pastoral assistance” to the woman, and she did not hear from them again until March 2004.

Fr. David Brusky spent much of his adult life in Africa missions before moving into an assisted-living facility in Milwaukee following a stroke in 1997. Reports say he has no recollection of such claims and that he never heard of a settlement. He died in 2014 while in the facility at the age of 87. Fr. Brusky is listed on the Diocese of Santa Rosa’s 2019 List of Clergy Credibly Accused of Sexual Abuse of a Minor, as well as the Diocese of Las Vegas and Sacramento’s 2019 lists.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Diocese of Santa Rosa in California.  If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in one of California’s Catholic dioceses, contact our office today. Although many years have passed, those abused by Catholic clergy in the Diocese of Santa Rosa now have legal options due to a voluntary compensation fund created by the Diocese of Santa Rosa, but filing deadlines will apply so do not delay in reaching out to us.  Our lawyers have decades of experience representing survivors of clergy sexual abuse in California and nationwide. We can help. 

Contact us at (888) 283-9922 or adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com to discuss your options today.