|Allegation of '85 Abuse Leads to Columbus Priest's Removal
By Randy Ludlow
January 21, 2009
[with WBNS video]
A Catholic priest has been removed from the ministry over an allegation that he sexually abused a child while serving at a Newark church in 1985.
The Rev. Frederick A. Loyd was removed from active ministry after officials of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Columbus investigated a complaint and found that the abuse allegation was credible.
The sexual abuse allegedly occurred while Loyd served at St. Francis de Sales Church in Newark, where he was associate The sexual abuse allegedly occurred while Loyd served at St. Francis de Sales Church in Newark, where he was associate pastor from 1983 to 1987, the diocese said in a news release.
Bishop Frederick F. Campbell removed Loyd from the ministry on Dec. 10. The church is studying options to permanently remove him since its preliminary conclusion is not proof of guilt, the release said.
The diocese said the complaint was the first "specific allegation of this nature" it had received about Loyd, 64, who retired from active ministry in 2006. He has not held a church assignment since 2004.
He had been a priest in the Columbus Diocese since 1970. A message seeking comment was left at Loyd's Columbus home.
Church officials said they notified Newark police of the abuse complaint. However, Sgt. Barry Connell said officers never investigated because the age of the case would prevent prosecution. Ohio law requires most felony charges to be filed within six years of the offense.
Loyd has served at a dozen central Ohio churches, taught at Bishop Hartley High School and served as a chaplain at the former Doctors Hospital North, Mount Carmel East Hospital and Nationwide Children's Hospital.
The diocese said it will conduct outreach efforts at the places where Loyd was assigned to determine whether there might be other victims of abuse. It urged people who have experienced abuse by church officials to call the diocese at 614-224-2251.
Judy Jones, an Ohio spokeswoman for Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, said the organization was researching the case. She urged anyone with information about possible abuse involving Loyd to contact police.
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