One-time Pastor Who Molested 12-year-old Dies at 82
By Rita Price
February 11, 2013
A former central Ohio priest who spent a year in prison for molesting a 12-year-old boy has died.
Thomas L. McLaughlin, known as “Father Mac,” died last Wednesday at the age of 82.
McLaughlin was removed from his duties as pastor at Church of the Resurrection in New Albany months before he pleaded guilty in 1989 to molesting the child at the priest’s cottage at Indian Lake in Logan County. In exchange for the plea, charges that he had molested six other boys were not pursued.
McLaughlin also was pastor at St. Mary Church in Marion and served at other parishes in the Columbus diocese.
According to his obituary, McLaughlin, who agreed to leave the priesthood in 1990, operated a Christian bed and breakfast in his retirement.
Advocates say victims should know when their abusers have passed. In a statement released today, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP) urged anyone who may have seen, suspected or suffered from crimes in the McLaughlin case to “come forward, expose wrongdoers, get help and start healing.”
Judy Jones, the organization’s Midwest associate director, said silence is still the norm. “ Most who were sexually assaulted as children by clerics never disclose or discuss the experience,” she said.
A civil lawsuit filed by two victims in the McLaughlin case was settled in 1992, SNAP said.