In Shocking Video Testimony, Accused Hawaii Predator Priest Admits to Molesting Dozens in Many States

At a news conference today in Honolulu, attorneys presented  gripping video testimony of predator priest Father Gerald Allen Funcheon admitting the sexual abuse of children during 40 years of assignments in Indiana, Nebraska, Minnesota, Florida, Texas, Hawaii, California, on military bases in the United States and Germany and during travels to Spain.

Video of Priest

Priest Father Gerald Allen Funcheon admitting the sexual abuse of children

In the shocking video, the accused predator Funcheon discusses why he wasn’t stopped; explains how he was transferred from assignment to assignment; and how efforts of parents to stop him were thwarted by church and school officials.

At the news conference attorneys also announced a new lawsuit against Funcheon brought by two additional sexual abuse victims at Damien Memorial School in Honolulu. Funcheon, who worked at Damien Memorial School in the early 1980’s, has been accused of sexual abuse by three Hawaii men and more than two dozen men on the mainland.  Funcheon has been named in several lawsuits in states around the country, including Indiana, Minnesota and California.

 

Former Honolulu High School PRINCIPAL Accused of Sex Abuse in Legal Claim

At least five other school employees have been accused, Seattle school officials quietly removed cleric in August, Religious order filed bankruptcy after more than 200 victims came forward, Now, more than 400 say they were abused by Christian Brothers, At least 12 came from Damien Memorial School.

A man who says he was sexually abused by the former principal of a Honolulu high school has filed a sex abuse and cover-up claim in the New York courts.  http://www.king5.com/news/ODea-High-school-principal-resigns-sexual-abuse-allegations-176691111.html

Karl Walczak

The suit charges that the victim, known as John Doe, was sexually abused by Damien Memorial School former principal Br. Karl Walczak in 1971 at Brother Rice High School in Chicago. At the time, Walczak was a teacher at the school. http://www.komonews.com/news/local/ODea-High-School-principal-resigns-amid-sex-abuse-allegations-176692501.html

Walczak is a member of the Irish Christian Brothers, a New York State-based religious order that runs Brother Rice High School and more than a dozen other schools across the country. Walczak was principal at Damien Memorial School from 1987 to 1999.

Walczak is currently the principal of O’Dea High School in Seattle http://www.odea.org/academics/faculty-staff-bios/administrative-team. He was quietly put on leave in August when the lawsuit was filed. In a letter to parents, school officials said that Walczak was “fighting a claim” in the Christian Brothers bankruptcy, but refused to state that he had been accused of sexual abuse in the New York courts. http://www.bishop-accountability.org/news2012/07_08/2012_08_10_ODeaHighSchool_LETTERFrom.htm

Members of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAPNetwork.org), were appalled to learn that the Christian Brothers had keep quiet about the allegation.

“Parents and students in Hawaii have been duped yet again,” said Joelle Casteix of Newport Beach, California, SNAP Western Regional Director. “A brave victim has come forward to the courts to expose the man who abused him. Yet, the Christian Brothers have—at every turn—kept quiet about allegations, misled parents and put more kids at risk because they refuse to come clean about predators in their employ.”

In light of this latest allegation, the groups wants Damien Memorial and diocese officials officials to immediately alert parents, students and alumni about the allegations. “There may be a victim suffering at the school right now,” Casteix said. “Victims need to know that it is safe to come forward and report abuse, because that is the only way to put predators behind bars.”

More than 12 victims from Damien High School have come forward and filed claims. In addition, at least five other known, admitted or arrested predators who worked at the school have been exposed. http://www.staradvertiser.com/newspremium/20120824_Clergy_child_sex_abuse_allegations_arise.html?id=167294085&id=167294085&c=n

Last year, the Irish Christian Brothers declared bankruptcy in light of more than 50 child sex abuse lawsuits in the United States and more than 200 in Canada. http://www.irishcentral.com/news/Mounting-sexual-abuse-claims-causes-US-Christian-Brothers-to-file-for-bankruptcy–121020724.html. The order has also been rocked by sex abuse scandals in Ireland.

In January, the New York Bankruptcy Court set a “bar date” of August 1, 2012, for all victims of Irish Brother predators to expose their abusers in court. More than 400 victims have come forward and filed claims.

According to O’Dea High School. Walczak is currently living in New York. He has also worked in schools in Illinois and California.

The attorney for John Doe is Mike Reck of New York, (714) 742-6593, mreck@andersonadvocates.com.

Seattle press articles:

http://www.komonews.com/news/local/ODea-High-School-principal-resigns-amid-sex-abuse-allegations-176692501.html

http://www.king5.com/news/ODea-High-school-principal-resigns-sexual-abuse-allegations-176691111.html

http://www.nwcn.com/news/washington?fId=176691111&fPath=/home&fDomain=10212

http://theworthyadversary.com/1554-breaking-seattle-principal-removed-for-abuse-parents-not-informed

http://news.silobreaker.com/odea-high-school-principal-resigns-amid-sexual-abuse-allegations-5_2266086944012238907

http://www.q13fox.com/news/kcpq-odea-high-school-principal-resigns-amid-allegations-of-sexual-abuse-20121031,0,2277878.story

Contact:

Joelle Casteix of Newport Beach CA, SNAP Western Regional Director, (949) 322-7434, jcasteix@gmail.com

John Schuster of Seattle, WA, SNAP Seattle Leader, 360-551-9982, js98367@hotmail.com

Barb Dorris of St. Louis MO, SNAP Outreach Director, (314) 503-0003, snapdorris@gmail.com

Hilo Priest Accused of Child Sex Crimes Still Travels and Works with Youngsters Today

Holding signs and photos of themselves when they were abused, child sex abuse victims will announce that a long-time Hilo Catholic priest, Fr. George DeCosta, has been accused of molesting two boys, but continues to work for a church group that teaches music to teenagers.

They will also beg Honolulu Bishop Clarence Silva to: disclose why the priest was forced to retire, insist that the music group oust him immediately, personally visit every parish, school and facility where he worked reaching out to others he may have hurt.

Where: Outside of Malia Puka O Kalani Church, 326 Desha Ave in Hilo

Malia Puka O Kalani Church

When: Tuesday, August 21, at 11 am

Who:

One to two members of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAPNetwork.org), the nation’s largest support group for men and women sexually abused as children in religious and institutional organizations, including a California woman who is the group’s Western Regional Director

FR. GEORGE DECOSTA is a retired priest of the Diocese of Honolulu, Hawaii

Why:

Last month, two victims of child sexual abuse filed legal claims in New York state charging they were sexually abused by a long-time Hilo priest, Fr. George DeCosta.   Now, DeCosta is the pastor of the Hale Lokahi community in Hilo. He also works with Music Ministry Alive, a MN-based group that trains young people to be liturgical music leaders http://www.musicministryalive.com/mma2012/meettheteam.html.

The victims are coming forward as a part of the recent bankruptcy of the Irish Christian Brothers, the Catholic religious order that runs Honolulu’s Damien Memorial School, where DeCosta was a teacher. http://www.hawaiinewsnow.com/story/16904070/group-says-child-predators-worked-at-catholic-school

Both victims were young students at Damien in the late 1960s, when DeCosta worked as a religion teacher and director of the Catholic Youth Organization (CYO) at the school. At least one of the victims charges that DeCosta molested him at an Oahu CYO camp.

At the time of the alleged abuse, DeCosta was also assigned to St. Theresa’s parish in Honolulu, a parish with a school.

In 1973, DeCosta was transferred to St. Mary Gate of Heaven—now Malia Puka’O Kalani—Parish in Hilo. He stayed there until 2002, when Honolulu Bishop Francis DiLorenzo mysteriously forced him to retire at age 65. That was the year that the clergy sex abuse and cover up crisis attracted national headlines. Bishops pledged then to be “open” about child sex cases and oust predators from ministry.

Currently, DeCosta is a member of the leadership team of Music Ministry Alive, a MN-based group that trains young people to serve as liturgical music leaders in the Catholic church. http://www.musicministryalive.com/mma2012/meettheteam.html. He is also the founder of the Big Island Learning and Arts Community (BILAC).

SNAP believes that there may be more victims in Hilo and Honolulu and that church officials must do more to reach out to survivors. They want Honolulu Bishop Silva to make sure DeCosta is ousted from his current positions and personally visit all of the churches, schools and communities where DeCosta has worked, reaching out to potential victims. They also want Silva to release DeCosta’s secret personnel file and publicly disclose the full reason DeCosta was forced to retire.

The victims asked SNAP to speak out on their behalf, to make sure that what happened to them does not happen to other children.

Both victims also have rights under Hawaii’s new civil window law that gives victims of child sexual abuse a chance to seek justice in the courts no matter when they were abused.  http://www.hawaiinewsnow.com/story/18627821/lawsuit-claims-abuse-by-former-honolulu-priest.

Both victims are represented by California attorney Michael Reck (714) 742-6593.