Fr Joseph V. Reszkowski Horowitz Law

Msgr. Joseph V. Reszkowski – Diocese of Erie

Monsignor Joseph V. Reszkowski
Diocese of Erie

Fr Joseph V. Reszkowski Horowitz Law

Ordained: May 1954
Death: September 2003

Summary of Sexual Abuse Allegations against Msgr. Joseph V. Reszkowski:

Joseph V. Reszkowski is identified on a list of clergy members at the Diocese of Erie who were already deceased when allegations of child sexual abuse were filed against them. Nothing is known of the allegations against Reszkowski, other than the fact that the allegations were determined to be credible in October 2018, 5 years after his death in 2003.

Meisinger is buried at Trinity Cemetery in Erie, Pennsylvania.

Contact us today.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Diocese of Erie. If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in Pennsylvania, contact our office today. Although many years have passed, those abused by Catholic clergy in the Diocese of Erie now have legal options to recover damages due to a compensation fund created for victims. Contact us at (954) 641-2100 or adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com today.

Fr. Gary Ketcham, O.F.M. – Diocese of Erie

Father Gary L. Ketcham, O.F.M.

Diocese of Erie

Ordination: 1977

Health leave: 1989 – 1990

Suspended: 1998 – 2004

Laicized: 2004

Privately Employed: 2004 – present

Assigned as follows:

  • 1977 – 1984 St. Bonaventure University, Faculty Franciscan Friars (NY)
  • 1983 – 1984 St. Patrick’s (Buffalo, NY)
  • 1984 – 1985 Parochial Vicar, St. John the Baptist (Erie, PA)
  • 1985 – 1989 Parochial Vicar, St. George (Erie, PA)
  • 1989 – 1989 Health Leave, Guest House (Rochester, MN)
  • 1989 – 1990 Health Leave, St. Luke’s Institute (Suitland, MD)
  • 1990 – 1990 Health Leave, St. Patrick’s/St. Hedwig Cluster (Erie, PA)

Summary of Allegations against Father Gary L. Ketcham:

According to the grand jury report, Diocese of Erie officials learned of an accusation against Ketchem for the drunken molestation of two young boys in Mobile, Alabama “sometime prior to 1989.” Ketcham was later charged criminally with two counts of sexual abuse in Baldwin County, Alabama.  He was also sent to inpatient sex-offender treatment at a Diocese of Erie owned treatment facility, Ecclesia Center. As was often the case for priests criminally charged with sexual abuse, the diocese “loaned” him more than $30,000.00 to pay for his attorney. In our experience, the loans are rarely repaid.  Whether they were repaid by Ketcham is unknown.

Ketcham would go on to plead guilty on both counts of child abuse and was ordered to pay a $15,000 fine.  He now has a permanent felony record.

Ketcham never returned to active ministry, but it appears that he remained a priest until he suddenly requested laicization in 2002.  While the grand jury report is not clear on this point, dozens of Pennsylvania priests requested laicization around this same time. It is likely no coincidence since the scandal in the Archdiocese of Boston became regular national news in January 2002.  Whether Ketcham received any financial compensation or benefits as an “exit package” from the priesthood is unclear, but, in our experience, such an arrangement was common in dioceses across the country. Ketcham was formally laicized in 2004.

Ketcham is alive and believed to be residing in the Erie, Pennsylvania, area. Despite his felony conviction in Alabama, he is not a registered sex offender.  

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Diocese of Erie.  If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in Pennsylvania, contact our office today. Although many years have passed, those abused by Catholic clergy in the Diocese of Erie now have legal options to recover damages due to a compensation fund created for victims.  Contact us at (954) 641-2100 or adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com today.

 

massage envy sexual Horowitz Law

SEXUAL ABUSE LAWSUIT FILED AGAINST MASSAGE ENVY IN HOLLYWOOD, FLORIDA

Horowitz Law has filed a lawsuit in Broward County Circuit Court against the the downtown Hollywood, Florida franchise of Massage Envy arising from an alleged incident of sexual misconduct by massage therapist Aitor Aizpurua at Massage Envy on July 14, 2018.  This Massage Envy franchise is located at 1640 Sheridan Street in Hollywood, Florida.

According to the client, she removed her clothing and covered herself with draping before her massage therapist came into the room.   The Complaint states that the therapist recommended a “Thai massage” to relieve tightness.  Moments later, she says he got on top of her.  The client stated, “I feel his body weight go forward on me, on my back. And then I feel his breathing, kind of like over my neck area. I feel him, just basically getting an erection over my tailbone. When I felt him get the erection, I knew something was wrong.”  The client was frightened at what would happen next but managed to escape from the therapist and quickly end the appointment.

The Florida Department of Health previously issued an Emergency Order on November 29, 2018 restricting the massage therapy license of Aitor Aizpurua.  The Emergency Order was issued in response to this same woman’s sexual misconduct claim.  He has been licensed as a Massage Therapist in Florida since 2017 according to the Department of Health website.

All massage therapist in Florida are licensed by the Florida Department of Health.  Other states have similar licensing boards.  If your massage therapist makes any sexual contact with you, it is a violation of professional ethics and may be a crime.  In addition to reporting misconduct to law enforcement, if this incident occurs in Florida you can also lodge a complaint with the Department of Health at this website: https://www.flhealthcomplaint.gov

If you have a been a victim of sexual assault during a massage at any Massage Envy location, or if you know someone who has, please contact our law firm at (954) 641-2100 or send an email to sexual abuse lawyer Adam Horowitz at adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com

 

Fr. Herbert Gloekler – Diocese of Erie

Father Herbert G. Gloekler

Diocese of Erie

Ordained: 1949

Death: 1985

Assigned as follows:

  • 1949 – 1967 Sacred Heart (Erie, PA)
  • 1967 – 1974 St. Bibiana (Galeton, PA)
  • 1974 – 1985 Mount Calvary (Erie, PA)

Summary of Allegations against Father Herbert G. Gloekler:

In 2002 the Erie Times published an article describing the abuse that occurred in the Catholic Church as told by a victim and former student of Sacred Heart who says she was abused in the 1950s. She also sent an email to Bishop Trautman in 2002 requesting he stop the abuse within the church and help those who have suffered sexual abuse due to the neglect of the Diocese.

After seeing the news article in early 2002, a second victim came forward to the Diocese of Erie to report her abuse by Gloekler. She was a classmate and friend of the first victim and her family. The second victim said that she volunteered to do some office work at the rectory, and that Gloekler abused her during that time.  

A third victim came forward that same year to report that Gloekler once took her into his room in the rectory and raped her when she was a child.

Also in 2002, a  fourth victim wrote a letter addressed to Bishop Donald Trautman claiming that while sexually abused as a grammar school student at Sacred Heart.  As a thank you for her volunteer work at the rectory, Gloekler took her and other student volunteers (all girls) out to dinner. Before the meal, however, he stopped at his mother’s home with the female students where he pulled the girl into a private room and kissed her hard on the lips. A week later, when she reported to the rectory for volunteer work with other girls, Gloekler again pulled her into a private room where he “kissed her and molested her,” according to the grand jury report.

Not long after the Erie Times article, two seperate witnesses came forward to the Diocese to report what they knew about Gloekler’s abuse of girls at Sacred Heart. One of the witnesses was a nun at the time of her letter and a former classmate of the  victim identified in the news article. The witness confirmed that she often overheard the first victim, as well as other girls, complain about Gloekler’s sexual abuse during the time period of the abuse. The other witness claimed that while she was a student at Sacred Heart between 1957 – 1959, she helped fold church bulletins on Fridays and once witnessed Gloekler fondle young girls’ breasts directly in front of her.

In 2003, a former housekeeper at Mt. Calvary Church in Erie, Pennsylvania, also came forward to confirm her knowledge of Gloekler’s misdeeds. She worked for Gloekler in 1974, before Father Donald J. Cooper, another priest listed in the Grand Jury Report, took over Gloekler’s position and fired her. The housekeeper approached St. Mark’s Catholic Center in person to state she knew that both Gloekler and Cooper were involved in sexual misconduct. There was no specific mention of money; however, the housekeeper “inferred” that Gloekler promised her a pension at the time of her employment, and she had yet to receive it. The Diocese of Erie denied her request for a pension. There is no indication that the Diocese did any follow-up on the housekeeper’s allegations.

Father Herbert G. Gloekler passed away in 1985 in good standing with the Diocese of Erie.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Diocese of Erie.  If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in Pennsylvania, contact our office today. Although many years have passed, those abused by Catholic clergy in the Diocese of Erie now have legal options to recover damages due to a compensation fund created for victims.  Contact us at (954) 641-2100 or adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com today.

Fr. John Piatkowski – Diocese of Erie

Father John Piatkowski
Diocese of Erie

Fr John Piatkowski Horowitz Law

Ordained: November 1935
Death: 1970

Assigned as follows:

  • 11/11/1935 – 5/21/1948: St. Stanislaus Koska, Erie/Tyler, PA
  • 5/22/1948 – 11/16/1970: Assumption, Sykesville, PA

Summary of Sexual Abuse Allegations against Father John Piatkowski:

According to the grand jury report, the Diocese of Erie received an allegation of abuse against Father John A. Piatkowski by letter written in March 1955.  The author advised that at the age of 12, he became an altar boy.  During his time as an altar boy, Piatkowski began to kiss the victim and tell him that he loved him. He took the victim for rides and to the movies. It was during this time that Piatkowski would play with the victim’s penis until he had an orgasm.

On numerous other occasions, Piatkowski committed similar abuse on the victim in the church basement and in the parish house where Piatkowski lived. The victim related that while he felt that the entire situation did not seem right, he was afraid to tell his parents for fear that they would not have believed him.

In October 1959, another letter arrived at the Diocese of Erie, addressed to Bishop John Mark Gannon.

The letter indicated that the writer was requesting on behalf of the parish in Sykesville that the parish be assigned a new priest. The letter stated that Piatkowski had been molesting little boys and that the boys were afraid to talk. The letter alleged that Piatkowski made nervous wrecks out of the children and that they were afraid of him. It is unknown to the Grand Jury if this incident was ever referred to law enforcement by the Diocese of Erie.

In 2008, Bishop Donald W. Troutman met with a third victim and his wife at the St. Catherine rectory in DuBois. The victim reported that Piatkowski repeatedly sexually abused him when he was approximately 7 or 8 years old. The sexual abuse took place in the 1940s in a small parish in Tyler. Troutman referred the victim to counseling and reported the matter to Erie County District Attorney’s Office on January 5, 2009.

Piatkowski died in 1970 and is buried at Holy Sepulchre Cemetery in Cheltenham, Pennsylvania.

Contact us today.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Diocese of Erie. If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in Pennsylvania, contact our office today. Although many years have passed, those abused by Catholic clergy in the Diocese of Erie now have legal options to recover damages due to a compensation fund created for victims. Contact us at (954) 641-2100 or adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com today.

Fr David Poulson Horowitz Law

Fr. David Poulson – Diocese of Erie

Father David Poulson
Diocese of Erie

Fr David Poulson Horowitz Law

Fr David Poulson Horowitz Law

Fr David Poulson Horowitz Law

Ordained: June 1979
Resignation: February 2018
Arrest and Conviction: October 2018

Assigned as follows:

  • 7/05/1979 – 6/09/1982: Faculty, Bradford Central Christian High School, Bradford, PA Weekend Education, St. Francis of Assisi, Bradford, PA
  • 6/09/1982-8/24/1997: Faculty, Gannon University
  • 6/01/1991 -8/24/1997: Director, Parochial Administrator Gannon University
  • 8/24/1997 -12/03/1997: Administrator, St. Francis of Assisi, Clearfield, PA
  • 12/03/1997- 6/06/2000: Pastor, St. Agnes, Morrisdale, PA
  • 6/06/2000 -7/24/2001: Special Ministries, Clarion University/Catholic Chaplain
  • 6/07/2000 -6/30/2006: Pastor, St. Michael, Fryburg, PA
  • 8/08/2000: Chaplain, Dio. Div. of World Apostolate of Fatima
  • 7/01/2006 -11/08/2010: Pastor, St Michael (2nd 6-year term), Fryburg, PA
  • 11/08/2010- 11/08/2016: Pastor, St. Anthony of Padua
  • 11/08/2010- 11/08/2016: Pastor, St. Bernadette, Cambridge Springs, PA
  • 1/13/2012 -9/11/2014: Dean, Meadville Deanery, Complete term of Father O’Hern
  • 11/01/2013 – 2/2018: Other, Bishop’s Delegate to Mass in the Extraordinary

Summary of Sexual Abuse Allegations against Father David Poulson:

The Grand Jury reviewed a January 26, 2018 memorandum that was provided to the Pennsylvania Office of Attorney General by the Diocese of Erie. The memorandum recounted a telephone conversation that advised that a soldier had disclosed that he had been sexually abused by Poulson when he was a child.

During an interview with the Diocese of Erie, Poulson advised that “a friend of mine and I have property near Clarion” with a “little cabin.” Poulson’s friend and co-owner of the property is Mark Bettwy, who is presently employed as a sergeant with the Pennsylvania State Police.

Poulson estimated that he took 20 trips to the cabin and that approximately one-half of those trips were made in the company of minor boys. All of the trips with the boys required at least one overnight stay at the cabin. Poulson admitted that he was attracted to young men and had spent many hours, days and nights with several young men under the age of 18. He then provided the names of six children that he took to his cabin alone. Those names were provided to the OAG by counsel for the Diocese of Erie.

In February 2018, victim 1 was interviewed by OAG. The victim is presently 23-years old, was born in Wisconsin and his family moved to Pennsylvania when he was 7 or 8 years of age. Upon arrival in Pennsylvania, the Catholic Church played a major role in his family’s life because they were new to the area.

The victim related that his parents believed that the local priest, a young man in his late
20s, Poulson, would be a good role model for their children. The victim became very close with Poulson and viewed him as a friend who would take him places, buy him things, and go camping with him.

Poulson began to sexually molest the victim when he was approximately 8 years old. The abuse continued until he was 16. The abuse involved Poulson kissing the victim’s lips, kissing his neck, and sucking on his earlobes.

Poulson also fondled the victim’s genitals and penis, to include masturbation. The victim reported that on several occasions, he was made to reciprocate this behavior on Poulson. The abuse occurred on a biweekly basis from 2002 to 2010. Poulson made the victim go to confession and confess the sexual abuse to Poulson in his capacity as a priest.

The victim stated that his parents encouraged him to spend time with Poulson at the church
rectory and at Poulson’s camp. He revealed that he was sexually assaulted by Poulson at the
rectories at St. Michael’s in Fryberg and at St. Anthony’s in Cambridge Springs. The abuse at the rectories usually occurred on Sundays, after the victim served as an altar boy at mass.

Poulson Continues the Abuse at His Remote Cabin

When asked to estimate the number of times that he was assaulted at the rectories, the victim stated that it occurred in excess of 20 occasions. With respect to Poulson’s camp, the victim advised that he was assaulted at that location between five and 10 times. He described this
hunting camp as being in a very remote location in either Clarion or Jefferson County and that it
took approximately 10 minutes to reach it after turning off the road.

According to the victim, the cabin was a small, one-room, one-floor structure that was approximately 16 feet long by 8 feet wide. It was made of rough cut pine and had no heat, electricity or water.

The victim advised that when he was taken to the camp, he was always alone with Poulson. There was no bed there, so Poulson would bring one air mattress for the two of them to
share.

The victim believes that the last time that he went to the camp and was sexually abused by Poulson was in the summer of 2010. He was 16-years-old at the time. Shortly afterward, he left Pennsylvania and has not had any contact with Poulson since 2013.

The Grand Jury heard testimony from Bettwy who confirmed that he shared ownership of the property with Poulson. Bettwy stated that he was aware that Poulson frequented the camp with young boys and recounted a statement that Poulson had made when they purchased the property. Specifically, Poulson indicated his desire to see property ownership relinquished to the Bettwy family in the event that Poulson was ever accused of molesting altar boys.

Another Victim of Father David Poulson Comes Forward

The Grand Jury heard testimony from a second victim who revealed that he had contact with Poulson between 2003 and 2006 when he was 15 to 18 years of age. On several occasions over the course of those years, he went with Poulson alone to his hunting camp. He knew that Poulson co-owned the property with a policeman whom the victim met while he was at the camp on an altar server retreat. The policeman was not wearing a uniform at that time, however.

The second victim disclosed that while they were at the camp, Poulson put his hand under the victim’s shirt and rubbed his stomach and chest. During this same incident, Poulson slid his hand down the victim’s pants, underneath his underwear, and towards his genitals. The victim was able to roll away and thus avoid further abuse. He stated that he froze when it was happening to him and worried that Poulson would be mad or offended if he stopped him.

Other Individuals Testify Against Father Poulson

Nine other individuals who had contact with Poulson at the time when they were minors. The men described how Poulson would flirt and “wrestle” with them. One witness testified that he “joked” with Poulson about his sexual preference for little boys. Those who had visited the cabin explained that Poulson would bring a laptop computer and watch DVDs while they were there. They all noted that Poulson was neither an outdoorsman nor a hunter.

One witness testified that in early 1979, he was a student at Bradford Central Christian High School. At that time, Poulson had just started working as a teacher and soon became a trusted friend to him. Poulson took the witness to local chess matches and mentored him spiritually.

However, the chess matches then turned into dinners. The dinners soon included dinner with alcohol. Poulson then began showering the witness with gifts and cash. The witness told the Grand Jury that Poulson liked to poke and tickle him, This activity then developed into rough-housing which, in turn, developed into wrestling. He added that Poulson would often grab
him from behind to engage in horseplay. This activity occurred in either the rectory or the church. On at least one occasion, the witness recalled that Poulson had an erection while they
were “wrestling.”

A subpoena to the Diocese of Erie revealed a confidential memorandum from 2010. In the memorandum, Bishop Donald Trautman noted that complaints had been received regarding Paulson’s contact with minors.

The memorandum revealed that during a recorded interview, Poulson admitted that his text messages with male minors were “suggestive to sexual advances.” He also admitted to
Trautman that during the course of tutoring a minor, he shared a book with the boy and was
“aroused.” He then admitted to hugging the boy. Trautman’s memorandum indicated that he
“admonished” Poulson and told him to “cease and desist” such behavior. He further noted that spending time alone with a minor was a violation of Diocesan policy. Poulson continued in active ministry within the Diocese of Erie until his resignation on February 12, 2018.

Justice for Abuse Victims of Father Poulson

According to NBC News, Poulson was charged with indecent assault, endangering the welfare of children and corruption of minors — and three of the charges are felonies. He has pleaded guilty to sexually abusing two boys over the course of many years.

In January 2019, Poulson was sentenced to at least 30 months and up to 14 years in prison.  According to the Diocese of Erie, Poulson has agreed to seek laicization (removal from the priesthood) as part of his plea deal.

In March 2019, the Diocese of Erie announced that Poulson has been formally removed from the priesthood (laicized) and is no longer allowed to function as a priest.

Contact us today.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Diocese of Erie. If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in Pennsylvania, contact our office today. Although many years have passed, those abused by Catholic clergy in the Diocese of Erie now have legal options to recover damages due to a compensation fund created for victims. Contact us at (954) 641-2100 or adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com today.

Fr. Barry Hudock – Diocese of Erie

Father Barry M. Hudock

Diocese of Erie

Fr. Barry Hudock Horowitz Law

Ordination: 1996

Laicization: date unknown

Assigned as follows:

  • 1996 – 1997 Mercyhurst Preparatory High School (Erie, PA)
  • 1997      Catholic University, Faculty (Washington D.C.)

Summary of Allegations against Father Barry M. Hudock:

In 2008, a young woman came forward to report to the Diocese of Erie that she was sexually abused by Father Barry M. Hudock during her junior year at Mercyhurst Preparatory High School.  According to the grand jury report, Bishop Donald Trautman personally authored several documents in Hudock’s personnel file in 1997 that indicated Hudock and his victim had kissed prior to a trip to Washington D.C. with the girl in the summer of 1997.  According to Bishop Trautman’s notes, a “major episode occurred” in Washington D.C. with the girl in a hotel room that he shared with her and another female student. Additional records reflect that Hudock kissed and hugged the girl on numerous occasions, showed her pornographic videos, and sexually assaulted her in church rectories and in several different states.  

By the time the victim came forward in 2008, Trautman had already left the priesthood and relocated to Syracuse, New York, with his wife and seven children.  He took a job as a teacher at Christian Brother Academy, another Catholic Preparatory school. Hudock was terminated from his position when the allegation was transmitted by the Diocese of Pittsburgh.

It is not clear if these allegations were transmitted to law enforcement by the Diocese of Erie or not; transporting the girl across state lines to abuse her would constitute not just a state crime, but a federal crime.

According to the Diocese of Erie, Hudock was laicized (removed from the priesthood), but the date of his laicization is unknown.  We do know that he was not assigned to ministry after he was sent to Catholic University of America for further studies in 1997.  

Hudock is now working for the Liturgical Press at St. John’s Abbey in Collegeville, Minnesota.  According to the Diocese of Erie, which includes Hudock on its list of credibly accused priests, he now resides in Albany, Minnesota.  Hudock also writes under the pen name “Barry Michaels.”

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Diocese of Erie.  If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in Pennsylvania, contact our office today. Although many years have passed, those abused by Catholic clergy in the Diocese of Erie now have legal options to recover damages due to a compensation fund created for victims.  Contact us at (954) 641-2100 or adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com today.

 

Fr Andrew Pawlaczyk Horowitz Law

Fr. Andrew Pawlaczyk – Diocese of Erie

Father Andrew Pawlaczyk
Diocese of Erie

Fr Andrew Pawlaczyk Horowitz Law

Ordained: May 1962
Death: 1982

Assigned as follows:

  • 6/09/1962 – 1971: Faculty, Cathedral Preparatory, Erie PA
  • 1/22/1971 – 1976: Chaplain, United States Army
  • 8 /1976 – 1978: Chaplain, Hamot Medical Center, Erie PA
  • 5/01/1978 – 1982: Chaplain, Unites States Army

Summary of Sexual Abuse Allegations against Father Andrew Pawlaczyk:

In a letter dated April 20, 2011,` and addressed to Bishop Trautman at the Diocese of Erie, a victim reported abuse by Father Andrew Pawlaczyk. The victim explained that it began when the victim was a student at Erie Cathedral Preparatory and Pawlaczyk took him to football games where they were permitted to sit in the press box.

Soon after that, Pawlaczyk began taking the victim to steam baths, where they sat naked together and Pawlaczyk noted that it was not unusual for one man to whisk the back of another with a strange looking brush while in the steam bath.

Pawlaczyk built a fairly strong relationship with the victim’s parents and began visiting their home regularly. The following summer, Pawlaczyk picked up the victim and took him to a cottage on the lakefront.

The first thing they did was go swimming without swimsuits. Although the victim thought it was strange, he attributed the behavior to simply being rebellious. After swimming, they went back to the cottage and Pawlaczyk took the victim into the bedroom and told him that he was going to give him a massage.

The victim was face down on the bed with no clothes on. Pawlaczyk then sat on the victim’s buttocks—wearing no clothes—while he massaged him. Then they reversed roles. After they were done, the victim found ejaculate in the bed which was not from him.

Continued Abuse Even After Pawlaczyk Moves

When Pawlaczyk was serving in the United States Army and stationed at Walter Reed Hospital, the victim’s parents arranged for the victim to fly to Washington, D.C. by himself.

When he arrived, Pawlaczyk took him to the Kennedy Center for a concert and to a basketball game to watch “Pistol” Pete Maravich. From the time he arrived, Pawlaczyk supplied him with cigarettes and alcohol.

After a few nights, Pawlaczyk suggested that instead of sleeping in separate rooms, they should sleep on the fold out beds in the living room. They again performed mutual massages and then Pawlaczyk fondled the victim’s genitals. Pawlaczyk asked him, “Have you ever had an erection like this?”

That same evening Pawlaczyk took the victim into the shower so they could wash each other. Pawlaczyk also let the victim drink heavily and the victim did not recall what occurred the following night. The next day, the victim left for home and never saw Pawlaczyk again.

The Grand Jury did not find any documentation that indicated that the Diocese of Erie ever reported the case to local law enforcement. Additionally, there is no indication that the Diocese offered any counseling to the victim.

Pawlaczyk is deceased and buried at Calvary Cemetery in Erie, Pennsylvania.

Contact us today.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Diocese of Erie. If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in Pennsylvania, contact our office today. Although many years have passed, those abused by Catholic clergy in the Diocese of Erie now have legal options to recover damages due to a compensation fund created for victims. Contact us at (954) 641-2100 or adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com today.

Fr Jan Olowin Horowitz Law

Fr. Jan Olowin – Diocese of Erie

Father Jan Olowin
Diocese of Erie

Fr Jan Olowin Horowitz Law

Ordained: May 1968
Withdrawn from active ministry: 2016

Assigned as follows:

  • 6/16/1968 – 9/02/1970: St. Patrick, Erie, PA
  • 6/16/1968 – 9/02/1970: Faculty, Cathedral Preparatory, Erie, PA
  • 9/02/1970 – 3/09/1984: St. Patrick, Erie, PA
  • 8/16/1971 – 1/31/1983: Chaplain, Soldiers and Sailors Home
  • 3/09/1984 – 8/25/1986: St. Adalbert, Sharon, PA
  • 8/25/1986 – 11/07/1992: St. Joseph, Oil City, PA
  • 11/07/1992 – 6/28/1998: St. George, Erie, PA
  • 6/28/1998 – 12/21/1998: Sabbatical, American College of Louvain
  • 12/21/1998 – 6/05/1999: St. Joseph, Sharon, PA
  • 6/06/1999 – 12/31/2007: Chaplain, FCI McKean, Bradford, PA
  • 1/01/2008 – 8/21/2008: Sabbatical
  • 8/22/2008 – 8/31/2012: St. Michael, Emlenton, PA
  • 8/22/2008 – 8/31/2012: Chaplain, Clarion University of Pennsylvania, Clarion, PA
  • 10/21/2016 – 11/04/2016: Temporary Parochial Administrator, St. Elizabeth Seton, Sun City, AZ

Summary of Sexual Abuse Allegations against Father Jan Olowin:

According to documents reviewed by the Grand Jury, the Diocese of Erie personnel file for Father Jan Olowin contains a 1993 document entitled “Summary of Phone Conversation.” A man contacted the Diocese of Erie to report that a friend was sexually abused by Olowin, who had recently been appointed pastor at St. George.  The promotion had left the man “disillusioned” given Olowin’s alleged misconduct.  The caller also discussed the abuse of a second friend on a trip to Mexico.  According to the caller, the second friend was able to “fight off Olowin’s sexual advances.”

In November 2016, Bishop Lawrence Persico wrote a letter to Olowin, now retired in Peoria, Arizona, indicating that he had learned of an allegation of clerical misconduct made several decades ago against Olowin. Persico’s letter did not mention details, but it referenced a phone call that Persico and Olowin had the day before.  Per the grand jury report, “the Grand Jury can infer that Persico outlined Olowin’s offenses in this call and articulated the reason for the letter in greater detail. This letter officially restricted Olowin from public exercise of all priestly ministry until further notice.”  Simply put: Persico did not want to outline the allegations in writing but did catalog them during the earlier phone call. Whatever they were, they were serious enough for Bishop Persico to restrict all of Olowin’s faculties indefinitely.

A subsequent letter from the Bishop of Phoenix confirmed that Olowin would not be allowed to exercise any public ministry “until the matter of the alleged abuse was resolved.” It is unknown if the investigation of Olowin is continuing or if law enforcement was ever notified. It is also unclear if the 2016 investigation regarded the 1993 allegations or a new allegation received in 2016.

Olowin currently resides in Peoria, Arizona.  His name is not included on the Diocese of Erie’s list of credibly accused priests.

Contact us today.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Diocese of Erie. If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in Pennsylvania, contact our office today. Although many years have passed, those abused by Catholic clergy in the Diocese of Erie now have legal options to recover damages due to a compensation fund created for victims. Contact us at (954) 641-2100 or adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com today.

Fr. John Murray – Diocese of Erie

Father John L. Murray
Diocese of Erie

Fr John L Murray Horowitz Law

Fr John L Murray Horowitz Law

Ordained: May 1947

Sick leave: 1968-1972 and 1985-1987

Criminal conviction: 1985

Permanently restricted: 1987

Death: date unknown

Assigned as follows:

  • 5/31/1947 -5/28/1955: Sacred Heart, Parochial Vicar with Residence, Sharon, PA
  • 5/28/1955 -6/11/1960: St. Paul, Parochial Vicar with Residence, Erie, PA
  • 8/25/1959 -6/11/1960: St. Paul, Parochial Vicar with Residence. Special Duties, Part-Time Faculty, Erie Cathedral Preparatory, Erie, PA
  • 6/11/1960 -8/01/1966: Special Ministry, Erie Cathedral Preparatory, Erie, PA
  • 8/27/1966 -1/31/1969: Special Ministry, DuBois Central Catholic HS, Special Duties, Headmaster, DuBois, PA
  • 6/16/1967 -10/15/1968: St. Bernard, Administration with Residence, Falls Creek, PA
  • 10/15/1968- 5/26/1972: Health Leave
  • 5/26/1972 -1/04/1974: Special Ministry, Vicar Assistant with Residence, Our Lady Queen of the Americas, Conneaut Lake, PA
  • 1/04/1974 – 6/01/1979: Pastor with Residence, Our Lady Queen of the Americas, Conneaut Lake, PA
  • 6/01/1979 – 10/15/1985: Pastor with Residence, St. Matthew in the Woods, Erie, PA
  • 10/15/1985 – 6/01/1987: Sick Leave
  • 6/01/1987: Restricted, Erie, PA

Summary of Sexual Abuse Allegations against Father John Murray:

According to the grand jury report, the Diocese of Erie received reports that Father John L. Murray sexually molested young boys in a church rectory before serving mass, as well as in recreational settings such as the lake shore. A review of his Diocesan file revealed that, as a result, the Diocese of Erie paid thousands of dollars in therapy fees and civil settlements. Two of his victims received monetary settlements in the amount of $25,000 each.

The first allegation of sexual abuse against Murray was made in 1967. It was reported that in the summer of 1966, Murray, while in a social setting with the victim’s family at the shore, allegedly fondled the young boy in the water and on shore.

This incident was brought to the attention of the boy’s parents and Bishop John F. Whealon in 1967. There was no indication in the file that law enforcement was notified. Whealon’ s personal notes revealed that he confronted Murray with the accusation and spoke with the victim’s father on a number of occasions. Murray partially denied the allegation by telling the Bishop that the victim has “an overactive imagination,” and that any touching was accidental due to normal roughhousing with the boy.

The notes further indicated that the victim’s father met with Murray and Murray apologized to him for the incident. The records revealed that Whealon convinced the family that nothing could be done in this case. Whealon wrote that the victim’s mother and father have “no doubt that this priest (Murray) did something wrong, in the water and on the shore.”

Whealon recorded the father as saying, “If it was the first time, Father Murray is now so frightened that it will not happen again.”

In April of 1985, Murray was charged by the Pennsylvania State Police with one count each of indecent assault and corruption of minors as the result of Murray sexually molesting a 12-year-old boy who was preparing to serve mass in the church rectory. He eventually pled guilty to both charges, was sentenced to 12 months’ probation and fined.

As a result of Murray’s second instance of child molestation, the Diocese disciplined him by removing his priestly faculties in 1985. While awaiting sentencing on his criminal charges, the Diocese of Erie sent Murray to two treatment facilities. After several years of treatment, paid for by the Diocese, Murray was retired and moved to his family home in Philadelphia. As of 2007, he was still receiving money to pay for his therapy.

Finally, in 2016, Bishop Lawrence Persico received the latest complaint against Murray. This incident came to the attention of the Diocese when the victim was visiting the Conneaut Lake area. According to Persico’s handwritten file note, the victim, now 55 years of age, was a 12-year-old boy in 1973. He was cutting grass at Our Lady of the Americas church where Murray was the Pastor. Murray allegedly grabbed the child’s genitals through the boy’s clothes.

Persico wrote to the victim on September 15, 2016, and advised him that the Diocese notified the Erie County District Attorney’s Office and reported the incident to Childline. He further advised that Murray was out of ministry, was not permitted to function as a priest and offered to speak with the victim should he have any further questions.

Murray appears on the Diocese of Erie’s list of credibly accused priests who are now deceased.  The date of his death is unknown.

Contact us today.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Diocese of Erie. If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in Pennsylvania, contact our office today. Although many years have passed, those abused by Catholic clergy in the Diocese of Erie now have legal options to recover damages due to a compensation fund created for victims. Contact us at (954) 641-2100 or adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com today.