Tag: Archdiocese of Philadelphia sex abuse attorney

Fr. Theodore Podson (Piarist Fathers) – Archdiocese of Philadelphia

Father Theodore Podson

Archdiocese of Philadelphia

Theodore Podson Horowitz Law

Ordained: 1976

Removed: 2012

Assigned as follows:

  • Calasanctius School (Buffalo, NY)
  • St. Francis Catholic Church (Amarillo, TX)
  • Devon Prep School (Devon, PA)

Summary of Abuse Allegations against Father Theodore Podson:

Father Theodore Podson, a priest of the Piarist order, was considered a “cool” teacher for many years in the late 1970s and early 1980s at Calasanctius School for gifted children in Buffalo, NY. He was known for leading week long field trips across the country with students. 

According to media reports, in 1993, he was suspended from his position at Devon Prep School in Pennsylvania amid allegations he repeatedly sexually abused a male seventh or eighth grade student while on a trip to Greece. He was sent to St. Luke’s Institute, a church-run hospital in Maryland for treatment. He was not publicly identified, charged or removed from active ministry. 

In 1994, he was one of five religious order priests identified as “guilty of sexual misconduct with a minor,” on a list compiled by Monsignor William J. Lynn. By 1995, he served as pastor and prison chaplain at St. Francis Church in Amarillo, Texas. He resigned suddenly in June 2002, three days after the U.S. Conference of Bishops stated it would remove any priest who had sexually abused minors.

By 2003, Father Podson relocated to the Philippines and worked as a hospital chaplain on the island of Cebu. In August 2012, he was removed from ministry after a series of articles in the Philadelphia Inquirer traced his path from Buffalo, where his conduct at Calasanctius was questioned, to Philadelphia, where he was accused of sexually abusing a 13-year-old boy on a class trip. 

In August 2018, a spokesman for the Diocese of Buffalo said, “In 2003, the Diocese of Buffalo received a complaint against Father Podson alleging abuse many years earlier. In accordance with the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People, the Diocese forwarded the complaint to the Piarist Provincial and to the Archdiocese of Washington where Father Podson was listed as a resident at the time.”

In November 2018, Father Podson’s name appeared on the Diocese of Buffalo’s updated list of clergy credibly accused of sex abuse of minors. He was accused in 2019 in two Child Victims Act lawsuits of molesting a 12-year-old student and a 13-year-old student while he taught at Calasanctius. 

He was granted Filipino citizenship, and currently lives on a small island in the Philippines, where he has promoted himself as a mentor to teenagers and rented an apartment that he opened up to “teen scholars.” In the citizenship petition, posted online, a local legislator wrote: “Father Podson has greatly contributed to the moral, spiritual and social growth of the Philippines.”

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.  If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in Philadelphia, contact our office today. Although many years have passed, those abused by Catholic clergy in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia now have legal options to recover damages due to a compensation fund created for victims.  Call us at (888) 283-9922 or send an email to adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com to discuss your options today.

Fr. John R. Liggio (Augustinian) – Archdiocese of Philadelphia

Father John R. Liggio

Archdiocese of Philadelphia

Ordained: 1975

Removed: 2002

Assigned as follows:

  • Malvern Preparatory School (Philadelphia, PA)

Summary of Abuse Allegations against Father John R. Liggio:

Father John R. Liggio, an Augustinian priest served as a teacher of religion and campus ministry director at Malvern Prep School. According to media reports, in late 2002, he was placed on leave amid allegations he repeatedly sexaully abused a 15-year-old male student from 1997 through 1998. He denied the allegations. 

In January 2003, the District Attorney’s office launched an investigation, and in September 2003, declined to file charges citing insufficient evidence. A civil suit was filed in July 2012. It is believed he currently lives in Hudson, FL.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.  If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in Philadelphia, contact our office today. Although many years have passed, those abused by Catholic clergy in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia now have legal options to recover damages due to a compensation fund created for victims.  Call us at (888) 283-9922 or send an email to adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com to discuss your options today.

Fr. Terrance Pinkowski (Franciscan) – Archdiocese of Philadelphia

Father Terrance Pinkowski

Archdiocese of Philadelphia

Ordained: 1949

Died: 1991

Assigned as follows:

  • Archbishop Ryan High School (Philadelphia, PA)

Summary of Abuse Allegations against Father Terrance Pinkowski:

Father Terrance Pinkowski, a priest of the Franciscan order, served as a teacher and counselor at Archbishop Ryan High School in Philadelphia. According to media reports, in 1992, he was named in a civil suit alleging he repeatedly sexually abused a man when he was a 14-year-old student until he was almost 20 between 1976 and 1981. 

As the boy grew up, the priest told him that the abuse was “therapy,” part of his spiritual preparation for ordination. The boy had planned to become a priest. 

When the alleged victim went to officials, the head of the Franciscan order promised to pay for therapy and take care of the priest, who denied the allegations. They transferred Father Pinkowski, but refused to pay for therapy. The Pennsylvania Superior Court dismissed the case, ruling that it was too late because of statute of limitations. Father Pinkowski died in 1991.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.  If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in Philadelphia, contact our office today. Although many years have passed, those abused by Catholic clergy in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia now have legal options to recover damages due to a compensation fund created for victims.  Call us at (888) 283-9922 or send an email to adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com to discuss your options today.

Fr. Nilo Martins (Brazil) – Archdiocese of Philadelphia

Father Nilo Martins

Archdiocese of Philadelphia

Ordained: 1978

Died: Unknown

Assigned as follows:

  • Incarnation of Our Lord (Philadelphia, PA)
  • Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception (Tingua, Brazil)

Summary of Abuse Allegations against Father Nilo Martins:

Father Nilo Martins was a Brazilian pediatrician and Jesuit priest who came to the United States in May 1984 from the Catholic church in Brazil. According to media reports, in 1985, he pleaded guilty to sexual assault for raping a 12-year-old altar boy at Incarnation of Our Lord Church while he served as the assistant pastor. 

According to court records, Father Martins invited the boy up to his rectory room one Saturday afternoon. He ordered the child to undress and then anally raped him. The victim testified that as he cried out in pain, the priest kept insisting, “Tell me that you like it.” When the priest was finished, he gave the boy a puzzle as a gift and told him to get dressed and leave. 

After Father Martins’ arrest, the church sent him to its psychiatric hospital, Villa St. Joseph’s in Downingtown. At his sentencing, transcripts show the church psychiatrist said he did “not pose a threat to society,” and did “not believe further incarceration would be at all helpful.”

“The church is supposed to be about love and compassion and support,” said the victim. “I was a 12-year-old kid and not once did they ever show any concern for me,” the victim said. “They did not make any attempt to reach out to my family. Not once did they make any effort to provide any type of counseling or anything.”

Father Martins served five weeks of a 23-46 month prison sentence and was deported to Brazil, where he resumed his duties as a priest, with access to children. 

“It actually scares me to know that despite his having been convicted of sexual assault, they would keep him a position where he might do harm to other children,” said the victim who grew up to become a police officer.

Brazilian church officials claimed they had no knowledge of his Philadelphia conviction. He has reportedly left the priesthood, and since 2002 when he was 65 years old, he was blind and hospitalized in Sao Paulo. His current whereabouts are unknown.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.  If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in Philadelphia, contact our office today. Although many years have passed, those abused by Catholic clergy in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia now have legal options to recover damages due to a compensation fund created for victims.  Call us at (888) 283-9922 or send an email to adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com to discuss your options today.

Fr. Charles Newman (Franciscan) – Archdiocese of Philadelphia

Father Charles Newman

Archdiocese of Philadelphia

Ordained: 1985

Removed: 2004

Assigned as follows:

  • Archbishop Ryan High School (Philadelphia, PA)

Summary of Abuse Allegations against Father Charles Newman:

Father Charles Newman, a Franciscan friar, served at Archbishop Ryan High School, Philadelphia’s largest Roman Catholic high school, as a teacher, and was promoted to principal in 1993. He became president in 2002. In November 2003, he was fired for financial mismanagement. 

According to media reports, in 2004, he was one of two clergy accused of repeatedly sexually abusing a 16-year-old male student between 1994 and 1996. He allegedly plied the boy with alcohol, cocaine and marijuana, and performed oral sex on him at St. Pius X Friary. He also gave the boy hush money totaling $53,000 in checks and cash, some of it funds from the high school. 

The Franciscan order removed Father Newman from active ministry and sent him for counseling and treatment for “sexual predatory conduct.” The Franciscans allegedly offered the boy $50,000 to sign a release. He filed a civil suit, but it was dismissed citing statute of limitations. 

In November 2006, Father Newman’s accuser committed suicide with a drug overdose. In December 2007, the priest was arrested on multiple counts of theft totaling $900,000 from the archdiocese and his religious order, and one count of forgery. In March 2009, he pleaded guilty and was sentenced to four years in prison, followed by 10 years’ probation.

In December 2013, Father Newman was paroled. As of January 2019, he is said to be living a life of prayer and penance.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.  If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in Philadelphia, contact our office today. Although many years have passed, those abused by Catholic clergy in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia now have legal options to recover damages due to a compensation fund created for victims.  Call us at (888) 283-9922 or send an email to adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com to discuss your options today.

John “Jack” McDevitt – Archdiocese of Philadelphia

Father John “Jack” McDevitt

Archdiocese of Philadelphia

Ordained: 1966

Died: 1999

Assigned as follows:

  • 1967-1968      Salesianum School (Wilmington, DE)
  • 1968-1980      Northeast Catholic High School (Philadelphia, PA)
  • 1980-1982      Bishop McDevitt HS (Harrisburg, PA) 
  • 1982-1989      Salesianum School (Wilmington, DE)
  • 1989-1994      Father Judge High School (Philadelphia, PA)
  • 1994-1999      DeSales Centre (Childs MD) 

Summary of Abuse Allegations against Father John “Jack” McDevitt:

Father John McDevitt, (aka “Uncle Jack”), a member of the Oblates of St. Francis DeSales, once served on Philadelphia City Council. He was one of the founders and served as first president of the Summerdale Boys’ Club. He was also the founding president of the Northeast-Suburban Athletic Conference. He taught theology at several high schools in Delaware, New Jersey and Pennsylvania. He retired in 1994 and died in October 1999. 

According to media reports, in April 2009, Father McDevitt was named in a civil suit alleging he sexually abused a male student at Salesianum School in Wilmington during his junior year from 1985 through 1986.

In June 2009, the nephew of Cardinal John J.O’Connor, the former head of the Archdiocese of New York, filed a lawsuit in Delaware alleging Father McDevitt sexually abused him as a 14-year-old student at Father Judge High School in Philadelphia from 1990 through 1991. The order had already removed him from the school. The suit stated that the priest knew he was related to the cardinal and used that information to intimidate the boy. He left the school after his freshman year, stating in the suit that he could no longer take the abuse.

According to the suit, “He threatened him with low grades in his religion class in order to entice him into private tutoring sessions, and during the private tutoring sessions, he proceeded to sexually abuse the plaintiff.”

According to abuse survivor accounts, Father McDevitt also molested children at Camp Brisson, a boys’ summer camp in Cecil County, Maryland, which was run by the Oblates.

In August 2011, as part of the Oblates $24.8 million settlement resolving 40 civil lawsuits brought under the Delaware Child Victims act against the religious order, Father McDevitt was one of twelve names released.

In August 2018, Father McDevitt’s name was included on the Diocese of Harrisburg’s list of clergy credibly accused of sex abuse of minors, as well as the Pennsylvania Grand Jury Report, which included the account of a male who stated that Father McDevitt tried to forcibly kiss him while in high school.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.  If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in Philadelphia, contact our office today. Although many years have passed, those abused by Catholic clergy in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia now have legal options to recover damages due to a compensation fund created for victims.  Call us at (888) 283-9922 or send an email to adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com to discuss your options today.

Fr. Arthur B. Chappell (Augustinian) – Archdiocese of Philadelphia

Father Arthur B. Chappell

Archdiocese of Philadelphia

Ordained: N/A

Assigned as follows:

  • Province of St. Thomas of Villanova (Villanova, PA)
  • Mount Augustine Apostolic Center (Staten Island, NY)
  • Biscayne College (Miami, FL)
  • Merrimack College (North Andover, MA)
  • Villanova University (Villanova, PA)

Summary of Abuse Allegations against Father Arthur B. Chappell:

Father Arthur B. Chappell was an Augustinian priest. For eight years he served as Secretary and Treasurer of the Province of St. Thomas of Villanova. He served for two years as Director of Mount Augustine Apostolic Center on Staten Island. Father Chappell taught theology at Biscayne College in Miami, FL where he was also Director of Student Activities. He also taught theology at Merrimack College in North Andover, MA and Villanova University where he served as Chair of the Department of Theology and Religious Studies for ten years.

According to media reports, in May 2003, Father Chappell resigned from Villanova University amid allegations that he repeatedly sexually abused a teenage seminary student during his freshman year, when he lived in an on-campus house of seminarians from 1975 through 1976. The boy, who was studying to become a priest, reported abuse in 1977 to a Villanova psychologist who told the Order. Father Chappel was the boy’s spiritual advisor. 

“He used his priesthood and the sacraments of the church to manipulate me,” the man said. “It’s all about power, and his illness.”

A lawyer for the Augustinian order said Father Chappell acknowledged engaging in inappropriate sexual behavior with the boy but “disagrees significantly with the number and places and nature of events.” 

The order counseled Father Chappell at the time, but no written record of complaint was made and no further action was taken. Father Chappell has been serving as executive director of Augustinian Press since 2005.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.  If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in Philadelphia, contact our office today. Although many years have passed, those abused by Catholic clergy in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia now have legal options to recover damages due to a compensation fund created for victims.  Call us at (888) 283-9922 or send an email to adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com to discuss your options today.

Fr. James Behan (Oblates) – Archdiocese of Philadelphia

Father James Behan

Archdiocese of Philadelphia

James Behan Horowitz Law

Ordained: 1973

Removed: 2002

Assigned as follows:

  • Northeast Catholic High School (Philadelphia, PA)
  • Immaculate Conception (Wilmington, NC) 
  • Holy Infant (Durham, NC)
  • St. Paul (New Bern, NC)
  • University of North Carolina’s Newman Center

Summary of Abuse Allegations against Father James Behan:

Father James Behan was a priest with the Oblates of St. Francis de Sales order. According to media reports, in 1981, a year after he arrived in the diocese, he was arrested and charged with soliciting crimes against nature. He was found not guilty, but he did receive eight years of therapy after that arrest.

In April 2002, Father Behan was placed on leave after a man alleged he repeatedly sexually abused him when he was a 15-year-old student in 1978, while the priest was teaching religious studies at Northeast Catholic High, an all-boys school, in Philadelphia. The alleged abuse occurred in the rectory of Germantown parish and on trips to North Carolina and Quebec, and continued for two years.

In February 2005, Father Behan pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 12 years of probation. because he had left the state, prosecutors successfully argued that Pennsylvania’s statute of limitations was suspended and did not apply to him. He was also indicted by a Philadelphia grand jury investigating into clergy sex abuse. 

In October 2018, Behan’s name appeared on the Diocese of Raleigh’s list of clergy credibly accused of sex abuse of minors. According to the National Sex Offender Registry, Father Behan currently lives in Elkton, Maryland. 

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.  If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in Philadelphia, contact our office today. Although many years have passed, those abused by Catholic clergy in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia now have legal options to recover damages due to a compensation fund created for victims.  Call us at (888) 283-9922 or send an email to adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com to discuss your options today.

Fr. H. Cornell Bradley – Archdiocese of Philadelphia

Father H. Cornell Bradley

Archdiocese of Philadelphia

Ordained: 1969

Removed: 2006

Assigned as follows:

  • 1963-1965      Gonzaga College High School (Washington, DC) 
  • 1965-1966      De Nobili School (Dhanbad, India)
  • 1970-1971      Georgetown University (Washington, DC)  
  • 1971-1972      Gonzaga College High School (Washington, DC) 
  • 1972-1976      Gonzaga College High School (Washington, DC)   Residence: Holy Trinity Church (Washington, DC) 
  • 1976-1979      Gonzaga College High School (Washington, DC) 
  • 1979-1981      Jesuit Seminary and Mission Bureau (Baltimore, MD)   Residence: Jesuit Community of Loyola University Maryland (Baltimore, MD) 
  • 1981-1988      Jesuit Seminary and Mission Bureau (Baltimore, MD) Residence: Wheeler House Jesuit Community (Baltimore, MD) 
  • 1988-1989      Jesuit Community of St. Therese (Mooresville, NC) 
  • 1989-1993      St. Elizabeth of the Hill Country Church (Boone, NC) 
  • 1993-1994      Provincial Residence (Baltimore, MD) 
  • 1994-1999      St. Joseph’s University, Philadelphia (Philadelphia, PA) 
  • 1998                Jesuit Community of St. Therese (Mooresville, NC) 
  • 1999-2006      Jesuit Community at St. Joseph’s University (Merion Station, PA)
  •  2006-2007      Jesuit Community of St. Isaac Jogues (Wernersville, PA)

Summary of Abuse Allegations against Father H. Cornell Bradley:

Father H. Cornell Bradley was a Jesuit priest. According to media reports, in 1993, he was first removed from the ministry after accusations surfaced that he had engaged in “sexual misconduct” with three people, including two 15 year-old boys and a woman. 

In 1995, he was sent for treatment. He then returned to the ministry and was assigned to St. Joseph University.

In 2006, Father Bradley was again accused of sexual misconduct with an adult male during the early 1980s. As a result of this and four other credible allegations involving minors and adults over the course of three decades, Father Bradley was again removed from the ministry. 

By March 2007 five more people came forward, several with reports that Father Bradley had engaged in sexual misconduct with minors in the 1960s and ’70s at Gonzaga College High School, in Washington, DC, where he spent much of his career pre and post-ordination. Others complained that he had made inappropriate sexual comments involving a student and staff member at St. Joseph’s University.

In 2007, Father Bradley left the order and was said to be living under supervision in a Jesuit community on the East Coast. 

In December 2018, Father H. Cornell Bradley was named publicly as accused on the Maryland Province of the Society of Jesus list of Jesuits with credible allegations of sexual abuse of minors since 1950. 

In March 2019, a police report was filed in Charlotte, NC by a man alleging Father Bradley and another priest each abused him as a teen in NC in the 1990s. The alleged victim said, “At 13 I attempted suicide after the assault with Bradley by jumping off the side of the church, and since that point forward, it’s been a revolving door in and out of psychiatric institutions trying to get treatment and discussing the assaults that took place.”

In February 2019, Father Bourbon’s name appeared on the Archdiocese of Baltimore’s list of credibly accused priests. In December 2019, his name was added to the Diocese of Charlotte’s list.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.  If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in Philadelphia, contact our office today. Although many years have passed, those abused by Catholic clergy in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia 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. Christopher Lucas – Archdiocese of Philadelphia

Father Christopher Lucas

Archdiocese of Philadelphia

Christopher Lucas Horowitz Law

Ordained: 1985

Removed: September 2019

Assignment History:

  • St. Christopher Parish, Philadelphia (1997-2000)
  • Our Lady of Consolation Parish, Philadelphia (2000-2002)
  • St. Martha Parish, Philadelphia (2002-2004)
  • St. Hubert Catholic High School for Girls, Philadelphia (2000-2004)
  • Bishop Shanahan High School, Downingtown (2004-2005)
  • SS. Philip and James Parish, Exton (2004-2005)
  • Old St. Mary Parish, Philadelphia (2005-2006)
  • St. John the Baptist Parish, Philadelphia (2006-2010)
  • John W. Hallahan Catholic Girls’ High School (2005-2010)
  • Immaculate Conception Parish, Levittown (2010-2013)
  • Conwell-Egan Catholic High School, Fairless Hills (2010-2013)
  • St. John the Baptist Parish, Philadelphia (2013-2019)
  • John W. Hallahan Catholic Girls’ High School (2013-2019)
  • placed on administrative leave, priestly faculties restricted, and found unsuitable for ministry (2019)

Summary of Sexual Abuse Allegations against Father Christopher Lucas:

On September 16, 2019, the Archdiocese of Philadelphia announced that Fr. Christopher Lucas has been permanently removed from ministry following an allegation of sexual misconduct.  The Archdiocese’s internal review board investigated the matter and determined that Lucas was “unsuitable for ministry.”

The sexual misconduct occurred when Lucas was 17 years old, in 1974, and involved a minor child. No additional details were released by the Archdiocese, except to say that it first learned of the allegation in the fall of 2018.

At the time of his removal, Lucas was assigned as campus minister at John W. Hallahan Catholic Girls’ High School.

Lucas was originally ordained as a Franciscan priest and incardinated into the Archdiocese of Philadelphia in 2002.  Father Lucas previously served in the Archdiocese of Hartford.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia. 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 Philadelphia may have legal options, but filing deadlines will apply so please do not delay in reaching out to us.

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