March 24, 2005

Man Accuses Priest Of Molestation, Protests Outside Church

CALIFORNIA
ABC 7

Mar. 23 (ABC7) Father Steve Whelan is accused of repeatedly sexually abusing an East Bay boy more than 30 years ago. The lawsuit against him is one of almost 200 now underway against the catholic church in Northern California. I-Team reporter Dan Noyes spoke with the priest and his accuser today. He reports from Saints Peter and Paul Church in San Francisco, where Father Whelan now works.

The accuser, his family and about a dozen activists protested at Saints Peter and Paul today. They say they are concerned that children could be in danger at this church and school. This is the latest in a long series of reports the I-Team has done on the sexual abuse crisis in the catholic church.

Joe Piscitelli tells us he was 14 years old when the abuse first started at the hands of Father Steve Whelan at Richmond's Salesian High School.

Joe Piscitelli, accuser: "He abused me at the Boys Club, on the stairway, in his office upstairs, and he stalked me."

Piscitelli says the priest sexually assaulted him many times over the course of two-and-half years and that he told his family and a therapist provided by the church.

The priest was never disciplined. Father Whelan tells us Piscitelli is lying.

Posted by kshaw at March 24, 2005 06:45 PM