Fr. John Crews – Diocese of Santa Rosa

Father John Crews

Diocese of Santa Rosa

John Crews Diocese of Santa Rosa Horowitz Law

Ordained: 1971

Retired: 2013

Assignment History:

  • 1971: Sebastian’s Catholic Church (Sebastopol, CA)
  • 1973-2017: Hanna Boys Center (Sonoma, CA)

Summary of Sexual Abuse Allegations Against Father John Crews:

Fr. John Crews was ordained a priest in 1971, who served in multiple parishes in the Diocese of Santa Rosa. According to media reports, in 2013, he retired as the executive director of the Hanna Boys Center, a school for troubled youth, when allegations surfaced that he had repeatedly sexually abused a young boy in the 1970s, while he was pastor at St. Sebastian’s Catholic Church in Sebastopol, CA. The victim had died by the time it was reported in 2013, but a person to whom he disclosed his abuse reported it to local police when they learned that Crews continued to have access to children.

Since 2013, three more allegations have been made against Fr. Crews. In 2017, two men stated publicly that Fr. Crews sexually abused them when they were teenagers at Hanna Boys Center, one 1999-2001, the other 1984-1985, while he served as Executive Director of the Hanna Boys Center.

In 2019, a 43-year-old man told the state Attorney General’s office that Crews abused him when he was a teenager and a Hanna Boys Center resident from 1991 to 1993. The victim claimed that Crews’ abuse happened almost “immediately” after arriving at the center when he was 16 and escalated over time. Crews and the victim continued to have a correspondence relationship after the victim left Hanna in 1993 until 2015. The victim stated that the relationship was compared to Stockholm syndrome, a psychological condition that occurs when hostages develop an alliance with their captors as a survival strategy.

Father Crews was named publicly on the Diocese of Santa Rosa’s 2019 list of Clergy Credibly Accused of Sexual Abuse of a Minor. It noted “no current assignment” and that he retired in 2013.

Anyone who was sexually abuse by Fr. John Crews may still be able to bring a civil claim regardless of how many years ago the incident(s) occurred.

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.