Father John Crews and Kevin Thorpe at the Hanna Boys Center in Sonoma Valley, California have been accused of sexually abusing young boys who attended the Center. Many of the accusations originate from incidents that allegedly occurred decades ago. Father Crews worked at the Hanna Boys Center for nearly 30 years before he was accused of sexual misconduct in 2013 and relieved from his duties. He now lives on the East Coast and continues to hold his title as a Catholic priest.
Kevin Thorpe worked at Hanna Boys as a counselor under Father Crews and was recently convicted of sexually abusing several boys there as well.
They have come to Manly, Stewart & Finaldi for legal representation. Our law firm is known throughout California and the United States for our diligence when pursuing justice, closure, and compensation for victims of sexual abuse. We are proud to have the opportunity to once again give a voice to people who have felt stifled for far too long.
For the sake of their own privacy, most of the accusers have chosen to remain anonymous to the public at this time. However, David Ortega has come forth publicly in hopes to encourage others to speak up as well. He has alleged that Father Crews molested him repeatedly between the years of 1999 and 2001, when he was as young as 13. Mr. Ortega has stated that the sexual abuse he endured as a child was painfully demeaning, leaving him emotionally scarred to this day. Another anonymous accuser said he was abused as a teen in 1984, notably extending the timeline of Father Crews’ alleged abuse.
Fingers Pointed Towards Oakland Diocese
Back in January of this year, the Oakland Diocese released a list of 39 priests and deacons who had been committed for child sex crimes, or who had been accused by a credible accuser of sexual abuse. The list did not include Father Crews, however, and the majority of the named are deceased, creating an unsettled feeling that they had escaped justice. Santa Rosa Bishop Robert Vasa, who oversaw the compilation and release of the names, claimed he had the intent to confront Father Crews about the building allegations against him, but that there had not been enough information at the time the list was released to the public.
The Oakland Diocese has been criticized for either withholding information about Father Crews’ sexual misconduct, or for failing to identify credible accusations against him. The Hanna Boys Center has also been long-criticized for failing to properly train and oversee its staff. When its former clinical director was imprisoned for sex crimes against clients, the facility nearly had its license revoked.
Possible Legal Update Could Permit the Pursuit of Justice
Unfortunately for some of the accusers of Father Crews and Kevin Thorpe at the Hanna Boys Center, the abuse allegations stem from incidents decades ago, which fall outside California’s statute of limitations. Yet there is a glimmer of hope: A bill has been placed before lawmakers that could drastically extend the statute of limitations on child sex abuse cases. If that law is approved, then it is likely that all of the alleged victims would be able to pursue some form of compensation for their emotional trauma in civil suits.
Meanwhile, California Attorney General Xavier Becerra has encouraged clergy sexual abuse survivors to call his office to report the abuse, no matter how long ago it occurred. It is not known how many complaints against Father Crews and the Hanna Boys Center have been filed with the Attorney General’s Office so far, or if the investigation would soon end with charges formally being filed.
(For more information about this ongoing story, you can click here to view a full article from The Press Democrat.)
Let Us Be Your Voice If You Were Abused at Hanna Boys Center
Manly, Stewart & Finaldi is known as America’s leading sexual abuse firm for a reason. For more than 20 years, we have successfully represented victims of sexual assault and abuse. We never back down from any opposition, whether it be an employer, a coach, or a clergy member placed in a position of authority and influence over young children.
We are proud to be the voice for those who have come to us so far with claims of sexual abuse carried out by Kevin Thorpe at the Hanna Boys Center. If you have endured and survived their abuse as well, then please know you can come to us, too, for legal guidance and moral support. With our casework history that includes representation provided to more than 150 victims of clergy abuse, we understand the sensitivity and difficulty presented by your claim. You can feel confident and safe in knowing that we will handle your case with care, respect, and a true commitment to securing justice on your behalf.
Call us at (800) 761-2220 to request a consultation with one of our Father Crews lawsuit attorneys.