|Canton Priest Accused of Sexual Misconduct That Allegedly Occurred 30 Years Ago in Youngstown
June 7, 2009
CANTON — The priest of Our Lady of Peace parish has been accused of committing sexual misconduct with a minor in Youngstown more than 30 years.
Rev. Thomas Crum has been placed on administrative leave as a result of what the Catholic Diocese of Youngstown calls "a newly reported and credible allegation."
The incident is said to have occurred when Crum was a faculty member at Cardinal Mooney High School in Youngstown.
Crum admitted to the allegation and resigned immediately as pastor of Our Lady of Peace Parish in Canton, according to a press release the diocese issued. The allegation has been reported to law enforcement officials, who are investigating.
The Rev. John Jerek, a spokesman for the diocese, said Saturday that the issue surfaced last week and that Bishop George Murry met with the alleged victim last week, according to the Associated Press. The diocese said Crum has moved out of the parish house and is in a psychological treatment center.
Crum still is considered a priest during the ongoing investigation, the diocese said, but he cannot publicly celebrate carnets, wear clerical attire or present himself as a priest in good standing.
Crum has been a priest in the diocese since 1975. His first assignment was as an assistant pastor at St. Mary Parish in Massillon. Later that year, he moved to Youngstown to serve at Youngstown's Cardinal Mooney High School, where he stayed until 1977. He then served in parishes in Warren, Campbell, Ravenna and Orwell.
From 1992 to 1994, he served as pastor of St. Anthony Parish in Canton. In 1994, he took a personal leave of absence at his own request, the diocese said. He returned to serve at parishes in Boardman and Rootstown before finding his way to Canton's Our Lady of Peace Parish, nestled on 39th Street NW, in 2005.
Our Lady of Peace, Crum and the Youngstown Diocese could not be reached for comment Sunday.
"The Diocese of Youngstown continues to be committed to protecting children and helping to heal victims of abuse," said Bishop Murry in a prepared statement. "I am deeply sorry for the pain suffered by survivors of abuse due to actions of some members of the clergy, because nothing is more important than protecting our children."
The diocese encourages anyone who may have experienced sexual abuse by clergy or others associated with the church to contact the diocesan victim's assistance coordinator at (330) 744-8451 and to notify local law enforcement.
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