Toledo Diocese rules Catholic Priest accused of sex abuse unfit for duty

Published: Oct. 12, 2019 at 10:07 PM EDT
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The Diocese of Toledo has unanimously decided that Father Nelson Beaver is not suitable for priestly ministry.

The decision was announced today. Father Beaver was put on administrative leave in October of 2018 after an allegation of sexual abuse of a minor dating back over 25 years. Three additional allegations linked to the sexual abuse of a minor were also made and according to the diocese, substantiated against Father Beaver.

Prosecutors in Huron, Lucas, Williams counties looked into the allegations and decided in July of 2019 that the charges would not be pursed against Beaver.

That is when the Diocese started its own investigation. Diocese leaders say during that time, they discovered a fourth allegation of sexual abuse against Father Beaver.

The Diocesan Review Board found all four allegations were substantiated and they voted unanimously that Father Beaver is not suitable for priestly ministry. Father Beaver remains on leave and his case will be presented to the Holy See, Congregation for the Doctrine of Faith in Rome for review and a final determination.

Meanwhile, the Diocese of Toledo says they have offered pastoral care and professional counseling to each of the victims.

A Toledo leader of SNAP, Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, Claudia Vercellotti, released a statement on behalf of the local chapter saying in part,

"You can’t protect kids piece meal and parcel. Bishop Thomas deliberately released bits and pieces of important information, regarding yet another Toledo Diocesan Catholic priest against whom credible allegations of child sexual abuse exist, in the middle of a busy weekend."

"There are at least 4 credible allegations against Fr. Beaver, it’s important to remember, those who sexually prey upon kids, don’t voluntarily stop, they are stopped. We are grateful to the courageous victims who reported Fr. Beaver. Kids are safer because of them.

We are concerned their could be more victims out here and encourage anyone with information about Fr. Beaver to call the police.”

The Diocese of Toledo is encouraging anyone who has experienced sexual abuse by a priest, deacon, staff member or volunteer associated with the church to report the issue to police and then call the Diocesan Victim Assistance Coordinator at 419-214-4880.