Diocese: Retired Columbus priest credibly accused of abusing minor

David Schilder (Catholic Diocese of Columbus)

COLUMBUS, Ohio - The Catholic Diocese of Columbus said retired priest David Schilder has been added to the lists of priests credibly accused of sexual abuse of a minor.

In July 2004, the diocese said they received a partial and incomplete report regarding Father Schilder.

The diocese said the report did not provide specifics related to the conduct but alleged it happened in 1968.

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"Because of the incompleteness of the report, no determination as to credibility was possible at that time, and no process to remove Father Schilder from the priesthood could be initiated. Nevertheless, the allegation was reported to Franklin County Children Services on July 16, 2004. Subsequently, Father Schilder retired for health reasons and was instructed not to engage in public ministry as a priest," the diocese said in a release.

In September of this year, a second accusation was reported to have happened during a period between 1981 and 1983.

The allegation was reported to police and the diocese notified Father Schilder of the allegation and commissioned an independent investigation.

After reviewing the investigation, the Diocesan Board of Review for the Protection of Children found the allegations credible and recommended Father Schilder be added to the list.

The diocese has directed the third party investigators to continue to identify potential victims of Father Schilder.

Father Schilder began serving as a priest of the Diocese of Columbus in 1968.

His assignments have included: Assistant Pastor, Holy Rosary Parish, Columbus (1968-1969); Assistant Pastor, St. Timothy Parish, Columbus (1969-1970); Teacher, Bishop Ready High School, Columbus (1969-1970); Chaplain, Chillicothe Correctional Institution (1970-1976); Assistant Pastor, St. Agnes Parish, Columbus (1976-1977); Associate Director of Catholic Cemeteries, with residence at St. Joseph Cemetery (1977-1978); Director of Catholic Cemeteries (1978-1984); Chaplain, Central Ohio Council, Boy Scouts of America (1973-1975); Orient Correctional Institution, with residence at Corpus Christi Parish, Columbus (1985-86), later in residence, St. Ladislas Parish, Columbus (1986-1997); Chaplain, Elkton Federal Correction Institution, with residence at St. Paul Parish, Salem, Ohio, Youngstown Diocese (1997-2001) and Chaplain, Ashland Federal Correction Institution, Ashland, Kentucky (2001-2004).

The Diocese of Columbus encourages anyone who may have experienced sexual abuse by clergy or others associated with the Church to notify law enforcement immediately and also the Diocesan Victim’s Assistance Coordinator at 614-224-2251, 866-448-0217, or helpisavailable@columbuscatholic.org. Forms for reporting abuse are available in Catholic parish and school offices and can be accessed from the diocesan website (www.columbuscatholic.org).

Forms for reporting abuse can be found at Catholic parish and school offices, as well as online.

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