February 24, 2006

Abuse story strikes a nerve

JOLIET (IL)
The Herald News

By Joe Hosey
staff writer

JOLIET Tim Placher, a music teacher, newspaper columnist and lifelong Joliet resident, said the reaction has been positive since he alleged Thursday in a Daily Southtown piece that he was abused as a teen at the hands of a now-deceased priest while on a trip to Las Vegas.

Placher said the priest, the Rev. Richard Ruffalo, first took notice of him when he was a fifth-grader at the Cathedral of St. Raymond's. Years later, Ruffalo maneuvered to take Placher to Las Vegas with two other youths, Placher disclosed Thursday. Ruffalo died in 1997.

Once in Las Vegas, Placher said, Ruffalo got him drunk and molested him.

"So far, there's about 50 e-mails that I received and every single one of them is positive and supportive and angry with the diocese and the bishop," Placher said Thursday.

Posted by kshaw at February 24, 2006 07:39 AM