Richmond Catholic Diocese reviewing child sex abuse allegations against 4 former priests

Virginia News

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — The Catholic Diocese of Richmond will review allegations of child sexual abuse lodged against four priests no longer serving in the ministry.

According to the diocese, the four priests being accused of abuse include William Dinga, Jr., Joseph Slowik, Thomas L. Long, Jr. and Eugene Daigle.

“While the alleged incidents are from the past, we recognize the pain is still a deep and present reality for victim-survivors of abuse and for their loved ones,” Bishop Barry C. Knestout said in a statement. “We continue to pray for their healing and for their loved ones who support them.”

Fr. Dinga has been accused of abuse while serving at Christ the King Catholic Church in Norfolk, Va., in 1986. He retired in 1990 and was not permitted to exercise public priestly duties before these allegations, which Dinga denies, were made.

Allegations of abuse made against Slowik came from his time at St. Paul’s in Portsmouth, Va., in the early 1990s. Slowik, who served at St. John, Petersburg, St. Paul, Portsmouth and Church of Saint Therese, Gloucester, was removed from public ministry in 2006. The diocese could not get his response to the accusations.

Like Dinga, the accusations against Long come during 1986 in Norfolk while he served at Christ the King Catholic School. In 1988, Long took a leave of absence and has since had his priestly faculties suspended. The Richmond diocese could not get Dinga’s response to the claims.

Daigle, a religious order priest, has been accused of child sexual abuse while at St. Mary’s Star of the Sea in Fort Monroe during the late 1970’s. He is longer actively serving the ministry and has not been reached yet to determine how he has responded to the allegations.

The Richmond diocese said Monday that for Slowik, Long and Daigle, “The Church process will proceed based on the assumption” that they deny the accusations.

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