Father Michael Santillo
Diocese of Metuchen
Left active priesthood:1992
Assigned as Follows:
- St. Joseph Catholic Church (Bound Brook, NJ)
- Our Lady of Lourdes (Whitehouse Station, NJ)
- St. John Vianney (Colonia, NJ)
- St. Jude Church (Blairstown, NJ)
- St. Mary Church (Perth Amboy, NJ)
- St. Joseph’s Catholic Church (Washington, NJ)
Summary of Sexual Abuse Allegations against Michael Santillo:
Father Michael Santillo was ordained a priest in 1975 and served in the Diocese of Metuchen. He served in multiple parishes throughout his career. According to media reports, in May 1998 a man reported to police that he had been sexually abused in the late 1980s by Father Santillo, while he served at St. Mary’s Church in Perth Amboy, New Jersey.
Father Santillo had taken a leave of absence from ministry in 1992 to take care of his parents who were in poor health at the time and decided to come back and was working as an administrative assistant at a Schenectady, New York, parish at the time of his arrest in 1998.
Father Santillo was charged with molesting the then-13 year old victim, and was charged again in 1999 with sexually assaulting a second boy.
The victims were altar boys who were forced to participate in oral sex with Father Santillo and watch pornographic films. They claimed that the abuse had happened in the late 1980s and early 1990’s. They each said that Father Santillo gave them alcohol and even money to keep their silence after the abuse.
Three more victims spoke out against Father Santillo following the second set of chrages, and he was eventually convicted and sentenced to ten more years in prison. His name was also included in a 2003 Diocese of Metuchen settlement that included 5 different priests.
Santillo died in prison in May of 2000.
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