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February 12th, 2010 By Julianne Warren-Novick | News | Posted In: Social Justice, News, Courts

Cincinnati Priest Faces Sexual Abuse Charges

Continuing a trend that just won't go away, Father Robert F. Poandl of Cincinnati pleaded not guilty this morning to charges of sexual abuse, which allegedly occurred in 1991. The now 28-year-old man claimed that Poandl molested him during a trip to the Holy Redeemer Catholic Church in West Virginia, where he was accompanying Poandl who was to fill in for a local priest there.

Poandl was indicted last month on charges of 1st degree sexual assault, 1st degree sexual abuse and sexual abuse by a custodian. Father Dan Dorsey, president of Glenmary Home Missioners, to which Poandl was an associate, says Poandl was removed from active service as a pastor in Georgia when he learned of the allegations in June of last year.

However Catholic officials are receiving criticism from SNAP (the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests) for not publicly addressing the allegations sooner. “We...hope Catholic officials - in both Ohio and West Virginia - will tell the truth about why they kept quiet about these allegations for over six months,” said the group's midwest director, Judy Jones, in a statement released on Thursday. “Such secrecy is immoral and reckless, and may have led to other kids being abused too.” Poandl has served as a priest since 1968. He has resided as pastor over churches in Georgia, Oklahoma, Texas, and Mississippi.

As to why the alleged victim was even with Poandl in West Virginia at the time, it is unclear. Details over their visit to Holy Redeemer Catholic Church have yet to be disclosed. However one thing is certain, and that is it will be a much greater surprise if Poandl is found innocent of these charges than it will be if he is found guilty. It's strange to find oneself desensitized to a matter such as this. But unfortunately, Poandl is just another number in the 4,450 priests accused of sexual abuse between 1950 and 2002, this according to a 2004 survey commissioned by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.

Poandl's trial is scheduled for June 15, 2010. He is free on a bond of $15,000.

 
 
02.12.2010 at 04:00 Reply
For six months, church officials in OH & WV said nothing to anyone about these serious and credible child sex charges against a priest. Think of what a criminal can do in six months - intimidate victims, threaten witnesses, destroy evidence, fabricate alibis, even flee the country. Catholics should demand straight answers (and apologies) from their church hierarchy about this callous and reckless secrecy. David Clohessy, National Director, SNAP- Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, 314 566 9790, snapclohessy@aol.com. SNAPnetwork.org

 

02.12.2010 at 04:25 Reply
Savannah diocese, Cincinnati diocese, Tulsa diocese, Tyler, TX diocese, Owensboro, Ky. diocese, Atlanta diocese, New Orleans diocese, Harrisburg, PA diocese, Jackson, Miss. diocese, Metuchen,NJ. diocese. These are every other diocese that Poandl has worked or lived in. Please contact law enforcement if you were harmed by this priest. Judy Jones, SNAP Midwest Associate Director, 636-433-2511 "Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests" snapjudy@gmail.com

 

02.12.2010 at 08:07 Reply
Forgive me. A typo that was previously posted above stated that Poandl hadn't acted as pastor in the states listed when in fact he has. It has been corrected.

 

02.13.2010 at 02:13 Reply
4,450 priests accused of sexual abuse? I believe that number is way short of the true number of priests who sexually abused children. I'm sure the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops didn't include in that number victim/survivors like me who didn't go public, to the police or legal system. When I contacted the Cincinnati Archdiocese to report the sexual abuse I experienced by an associate pastor, Fr. Walter (Vaclovas) Katarskis at St. Albert the Great parish in Kettering. Ohio, when I was 11-12 years old, I said that I didn't want to pursue legal action. I knew that Fr. Katarskis was dead, and I also knew that I was not strong enough emotionally to face cross examination. When I wrote to Archbishop Pilarczyk in June of 2002, I did so with the naive belief that the Church would want to know the scope of the clergy sexual abuse problem, and would do all they could to investigate, remove abusive priests from ministry, and reach out to victims to aid their healing. Pilarczyk's answer to my letter should have cued me in to how things would often unfold. Instead of saying he was sorry for the abuse I had suffered, he restated the part of my letter where I had said that I was not planning to file a law suit. No heart, no compassion. Just protecting the Big Business that is so often the Roman Catholic Church. While I have been fortunate to encounter some really excellent, Christ-like priests as I have worked through my healing, I have for the most part been extremely disappointed, dscouraged, and even disgusted at the way many of the hierarchy have handled this tragic chapter in the Church. I no longer count myself as a member of the Roman Catholic Church. I call myself a "small 'c' catholic". Through the continuation of my own personal healing, and through participation in SNAP (Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests) and Voice of the Faithful, I do what I can to help bring healing to those who have suffered/continue to suffer from the abuses of power and greed in the Church. I pray for the strength to continue that journey!

 

02.14.2010 at 12:17 Reply
4,450 priests accused of sexual abuse? I believe that number is way short of the true number of priests who sexually abused children. I'm sure the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops didn't include in that number victim/survivors like me who didn't go public, to the police or legal system. When I contacted the Cincinnati Archdiocese to report the sexual abuse I experienced by an associate pastor, Fr. Walter (Vaclovas) Katarskis at St. Albert the Great parish in Kettering. Ohio, when I was 11-12 years old, I said that I didn't want to pursue legal action. I knew that Fr. Katarskis was dead, and I also knew that I was not strong enough emotionally to face cross examination. When I wrote to Archbishop Pilarczyk in June of 2002, I did so with the naive belief that the Church would want to know the scope of the clergy sexual abuse problem, and would do all they could to investigate, remove abusive priests from ministry, and reach out to victims to aid their healing. Pilarczyk's answer to my letter should have cued me in to how things would often unfold. Instead of saying he was sorry for the abuse I had suffered, he restated the part of my letter where I had said that I was not planning to file a law suit. No heart, no compassion. Just protecting the Big Business that is so often the Roman Catholic Church. While I have been fortunate to encounter some really excellent, Christ-like priests as I have worked through my healing, I have for the most part been extremely disappointed, discouraged, and even disgusted at the way many of the hierarchy have handled this tragic chapter in the Church. I no longer count myself as a member of the Roman Catholic Church. I call myself a "small 'c' catholic". Through the continuation of my own personal healing, and through participation in SNAP (Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests) and Voice of the Faithful, I do what I can to help bring healing to those who have suffered/continue to suffer from the abuses of power and greed in the Church. I pray for the strength to continue that journey.

 

02.14.2010 at 08:53
Colleen, thank you for your courage and for speaking up.. this is the one and only way to get this abuse stopped.. I admire you, Judy Jones, SNAP Midwest Associate Director, 636-433-2511 snapjudy@gmail.com

 

 
 
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