Priests and Clergy Sexual Abuse in Arizona

Reports of Abuse Across Arizona Dioceses

The parishes of Arizona are overseen by one of three dioceses based on geographic location; the Diocese of Phoenix, the Diocese of Tucson, the Diocese of Gallup (which also oversees parishes in western New Mexico). The Diocese of Phoenix began publishing a list of priests credibly accused of child sexual abuse in 2012. In 2003, an investigation into the diocese led to the indictment of six priests and the ouster of then–Bishop Thomas O’Brien who had admitted to covering up the abuse.

A recent release from the Catholic Order of Franciscan Friars of the Province of Saint Barbara, based in Oakland, disclosed the names of 50 clergy members who they say are credibly accused of abusing children. Half of the men on the list had assignments throughout Arizona including within the Diocese of Phoenix but only two were included in the Diocese’s list. Upon the release of the Order’s list, the Diocese pledged to review and update their own list as necessary and Phoenix Bishop Thomas Olmsted urged any victim of abuse to call local law–enforcement. The dioceses of Tucson and Gallup have also provided lists of credibly accused priests who have served there.

New Arizona Legislation

To support victims and allow for justice, in May 2019, the state of Arizona passed a law that allows survivors of childhood sexual abuse until the age of 30 to bring civil lawsuits against their abusers. Importantly, for anyone older than 30, there is a special window open until December 31, 2020 to file a lawsuit.

Clergy Members Credibly Accused of Abusing Children in Arizona

The following lists include current or former priests who have been sued and/or suspended following allegations of sexual abuse of minors or have claims against them in the state of Arizona. We are actively pursuing cases against Catholic priests and clergy as well as figures from other religious institutions.

Important note: If the name of a priest or other member of clergy you are searching for does not appear in the lists below, it does not mean that you do not have a potential claim against that individual. These lists of credibly accused individuals are always expanding as more information is brought forth to the dioceses and to authorities. Please contact us if you or a loved one has been abused by a priest or other clergy member, regardless of whether they appear in the lists below or not.

Diocese of Gallup26 Named Priests
Diocese of Phoenix34 Named Priests
Diocese of Tucson32 Named Priests

Diocese of Gallup

The following is a list of Archdiocese of Gallup Clergy who have been the objects of legal settlements or otherwise credibly accused of sexual abuse of a minor:

  • Michael J. Aten
  • Michael (Miguel) Baca
  • George Baz
  • Ephrem/Ephraim Beltramea
  • John Boland
  • James M. Burns
  • Crispin Butz
  • Charles Cichanowicz
  • David Joseph Clark
  • Finian Connolly
  • Joseph Coutu
  • Julian Hartig
  • James Lindenmeyer
  • Douglas A. McNeill
  • Rene D Messier
  • John Ambrose Newton
  • Jose H. Rodriguez
  • Conran Runnebaum
  • Raul N. Sanchez
  • James J Schlaffer
  • Mark Schornack (Schomack)
  • Lawrence Schreiber
  • Carl Todaro
  • David E. Viramontes
  • Samuel J. Wilson
  • Clementine Wottle

Diocese of Phoenix

The following is a list of Archdiocese of Phoenix Clergy who have been the objects of legal settlements or otherwise credibly accused of sexual abuse of a minor:

  • Solomon Bandiho
  • George V. Bredemann
  • Joseph Cervantez Briceno (Brecino)
  • Patrick J. Colleary
  • Laurence (Lawrence) Florez (Flores)
  • Dale J. Fushek
  • John Maurice Giandelone
  • Charles Gielow
  • Harold P. Graf
  • Gavin Griffith
  • Joseph John Henn
  • Edward Henriques
  • Jose Hurtado
  • Sung Lam
  • Karl LeClaire
  • Mark Allen Lehman
  • Joseph Marcel Lessard
  • Mark Liening
  • Jorge Ortiz Lopez
  • Saul Madrid
  • Gates Martin
  • Michael Minogue
  • Harry R. Morgan
  • Thomas J. O'Brien (Bishop)
  • Maxwell "Ron" Pelton
  • Henry Perez
  • James S. Rausch (Bp)
  • Charles (Jude) Ruetten
  • Marcel Salinas
  • Wilputte Alanson 'Lan' Sherwood
  • John D. "Jack" Spaulding
  • Richard Allen Suttle
  • Kenneth A. Van de Ven
  • John Willliam Vovko

Diocese of Tucson

The following is a list of Archdiocese of Tucson Clergy who have been the objects of legal settlements or otherwise credibly accused of sexual abuse of a minor:

  • Richard Edmund Butler
  • William T. Byrne
  • Patrick J. Callanan
  • Carlos Cocio
  • Jorge Washington Cordova Hernandez
  • Ron DeChant
  • John P. Doran
  • George M Dyke
  • Robert A. Gluch
  • Juan Guillen
  • Fernando L. Manzo
  • Francis Miller
  • Ray Miranda
  • John A. Oliver
  • George Pirrung
  • Thomas Patrick Purcell
  • Paul J. Ranft
  • Claudio Riol
  • Rosaria Riter
  • Walter F. Rosensweig
  • Charles Rourke
  • Julian Sanz
  • Clemens M. Schlueter/Schleuter
  • Byron Wayne Schoolcraft
  • Phillip G. Speers
  • Steven Gerard Stencil
  • Floyd G. Stromberg
  • Michael J. Teta
  • James Thompson
  • Robert C. Trupia
  • Gary E. Underwood
  • Richard Zamorano


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Confidential Inquiry

If you prefer to speak with us directly regarding your incident, please call the Meneo Law Group at 1-888-276-3030 or send us a confidential email.