Community speaks out after Owego priest is accused of sexual assault
By Esperanza Gutierrez
June 10, 2018
A nonprofit organization, which aims to help victims of sexual abuse, is accusing eight Diocese of Rochester priests of sexually abusing children.
Attorney Mitchell Garabedian, based in Massachusetts, claims that from 1950 to 1978, 17 minors raging from age five to 18-years-old were sexually abused by eight different priests within the Diocese of Rochester.
Garabedian named Thomas Valenti, who served at St. Patrick's Church in Owego as one of them.
"It was a shock, sure," said Marty Murphy, of Owego. "I imagine everybody was shocked to hear this. He's done a lot with kids or children, through his ministry."
Father Valenti is the parochial administrator for Blessed Trinity Parish which is made up four churches, including St. Patrick's.
Lawyers claim the alleged sexual abuse took place years before Valenti came to St. Patrick's.
Garabedian claims Valenti abused a teen boy, beginning in 1975.
At the time Valenti worked at St. Mary's of the Lake Church in Ontario, New York.