William F. Murphy
Rockville Centre NY

Bishop William F. Murphy is a key figure in the sexual abuse crisis, both because of his earlier role in the Boston archdiocese and because of conditions in Rockville Centre. The troubled diocese is the sixth largest in the United States and home to a vigorous press, an aggressive district attorney in Suffolk County (comprising the eastern two-thirds of the Long Island diocese), and a significant SNAP and VOTF presence. Below we provide links to our detailed account of Rockville Centre priests accused of sexual abuse and a comprehensive collection of reports and commentary on the crisis.


The names of 39 accused priests and brothers who worked in Rockville Centre are known from media reports and publicly filed legal documents, but the diocese's February 17, 2004 report of its own assessment stated that 70 priests "associated with the diocese" have been accused since 1957, when the diocese was founded:

42 diocesan priests with credible allegations
4 diocesan priests who were accused but "exonerated"
16 externs working in the Rockville Centre diocese but incardinated in other dioceses
8 religious order priests working in Rockville Centre

In a special feature, we provide information on the 39 accused priests and brothers whose identity is known, and on the other priests (up to 8) whose cases were discussed by the Suffolk County grand jury, but whose identity cannot be determined. We are actively researching the assignment records of the 39 known priests – a project that we will complete during March 2005 – and we can already state with confidence that accused priests have worked at over 60% of Rockville Centre parishes, that many parishes have had two or three such priests, and that at least six accused priests have worked at one parish, St. James in Seaford. It is most important that Bishop Murphy come forward, as some other bishops have done, and announce the names of the other accused priests. We believe there are at least 32 accused priests whose names have not been made public. The accused priests whose names are known, because they are named in media accounts or legal complaints, are as follows (two priests exonerated during secret Vatican hearings are included in this list):

- Bergin, James
- Brinker, Brian J.
- Burke, William M.
- Butler, John R.
- Carroll, Michael A.
- Chasse, Gerard J. "Jerry"
- Congro, Basil P.
- DeVita, Thomas F.
- Ditta, Angelo J.
- Duvelsdorf, Peter L.
- Ferraro, Romano
- Fitzgerald, Matthew
- Hands, Michael R.
- Hasselbach, Kenneth C.
- Huneke, Robert D.
- Mahoney, John F.
- Massaro, Gabriel
- McComiskey, Joseph C.
- McConaghy, R. Thomas
- McGee, Br. Finnian
- McKeon, Brian A.
- Millar, Andrew L.
- Miller, James C.
- Miraglia, Salvatore J.
- Mott, John D.
- Mundy, Joseph T.
- Murphy, Br. Howard
- Nee, Kenneth T.
- Newman, Louis I.
- Placa, Alan J.
- Ribaudo, Charles A. "Bud"
- Riordan, Brendan P.
- Saccacio, Robert J.
- Schaefer, Richard
- Sheehan, Augustine J. "Gus"
- Soave, Alfred M.
- Stegmann, Raymond V.
- Unterstein, Nicholas
- Vollmer, Eugene C.
- Priest G, Suffolk County Grand Jury report
- Priest K, Suffolk County Grand Jury report
- Priest L, Suffolk County Grand Jury report
- Priest N, Suffolk County Grand Jury report
- Priest Q, Suffolk County Grand Jury report
- Priest R, Suffolk County Grand Jury report
- Priest S, Suffolk County Grand Jury report
- Priest U, Suffolk County Grand Jury report


We have compiled a comprehensive collection of news reports, diocesan statements, and commentary on the sexual abuse crisis in the Rockville Centre diocese. We hope you will find it useful, and that you will email us at with suggestions for making the collection better. Shortly we will provide an introductory list of especially significant reports and commentary.

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