Cincinnati Priest Accused of Soliciting St. Xavier Student Via Text
By Hannah Sparling and Sharon Coolidge
April 9, 2018
A St. Xavier High School priest was fired after he was accused of soliciting a student for sex.
Father John Ferone was, until recently, St. Xavier’s Director of Adult Faith and Ignatian Programming. Officials with the school confirmed late Monday that Ferone was fired Feb. 23 after "an inappropriate communication" with a student.
Hamilton County Prosecutor Joe Deters said that Ferone was accused of soliciting sex from a student via a text message. Deters would not talk about what the message said specifically, but he said early indications are that it was inadvertently sent to the student.
“Based on what we know now, there’s not going to be any criminal charges,” Deters said. “If we need to follow up, we will.”
In a statement released on Monday, St. Xavier spokeswoman Becky Schulte said the school learned on Feb. 15 about Ferone's communication with the student.
Ferone was immediately placed on leave, Schulte wrote, and the student's parents were notified.
Schulte said the school also notified the Springfield Township Police Department and "presented them with all the information known to us," though police officials told The Enquirer the department has no reports involving Ferone.
Deters said the incident was reported directly to his office but that there are no written reports.