SNAP Press Release
Giving Voice to Victims
May 16, 2005
Two Accused Predator Clergy Taken Off San Francisco Parish Web Site
But Associate Pastor Facing Lawsuit Remains Listed
And Five Other Alleged Molesters Apparently Still Live Nearby
Two Catholic clerics who face child molestation lawsuits have been taken off the website of a San Francisco parish while a third who faces a similar lawsuit remains listed as an associate pastor.
For months (until last Friday), Father Harold Danielson and Brother Ernie Martinez have been working at and have been listed as staff members at Sts. Peter and Paul church in North Beach, with the knowledge and permission of top San Francisco archdiocese officials, according to leaders of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, a support group.
Five other Catholic clerics who live near the parish are also named as molesters in pending civil molestation lawsuits. Two of them are convicted sex offenders. All belong to a religious order called the Salesians of Don Bosco. The order was recently the subject of several investigative reports in the Dallas Morning News about church leaders who moved accused predatory priests across national borders to escape prosecution.
Archbishop William Levada has come under fire from for allowing the men to work and live in his archdiocese without warning parishioners.
"To allow these potentially dangerous men to live together in a densely populated neighborhood without warning others is irresponsible," said Terrie Light of Hayward, SNAP Northwestern Regional Coordinator. "The parishioners and the public deserve more honesty and more protection than this."
The two convicted sex offenders are Father Bernard Dabbene and Brother Sal Billante. The other five are Father Richard Presenti, Father Larry Lorenzoni, Father Steve Whelan, Brother Martinez, and Father Danielson. Until Friday Danielson was listed as an associate pastor on the church's web site. Whelan still is listed that way.
Several of them live at the Salesian Provincial House at 1100 Franklin Street.
Another Salesian priest, Father Jim Miani, lives and works at St. Luke's parish in Stockton. He too faces a civil child sexual child abuse lawsuit.
SNAP is an independent, confidential self-help group of men and women who have been sexually victimized by clergy.
Several of the lawsuits are being handled by Los Angeles attorneys Raymond Boucher and Cheryl Buchanan. The cases against Whelan and Presente are being handled by attorneys Rick Simons of Hayward and Larry Drivon of Stockton.
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