Woman Abused by Priest Who Retired to Home on Gonzaga Campus Says More Should Have Been Done
Fox 28 News
December 18, 2018
One day after Gonzaga University President Dr. Thayne McCulloh issued a statement apologizing for the University’s role in hosting priests accused of sex crimes, we have interviewed one of those priest’s victims.
Elsie Boudreau says she was sexually abused by Father James Poole in the 1970s. Poole lived out his remaining years in Spokane, retiring to a home called the Cardinal Bea House right in the middle of Gonzaga University’s campus.
Despite the Catholic Church settling with Boudreau, Father Poole never faced any criminal charges.
Boudreau says as she went through the process of speaking up and making her allegations “it became very clear that the Catholic church didn’t care about what happened to me. It was clear they were more concerned with the church and their reputation.” She says that’s ultimately what prompted her to file a lawsuit.
Father Poole left the Cardinal Bea House in 2005, but he’s just one of at least 20 priests accused of sex abuse that have lived in the home, as recently as 2016.
Boudreau says she thinks the University knew what was happening, but remained quiet. “I think Gonzaga needs to own up to that,” she says.