Father John J. McElroy Jr.
Diocese of Camden
Removed from ministry: 1988
Assigned as follows:
- St. Francis de Sales (Barrington, NJ)
Summary of Sexual Abuse Allegations against Father John J McElroy Jr.:
Beginning in 1986, only 1 year after he was ordained, Father John J McElroy Jr. began sexually abusing a 12-year-old boy. The abuse began when McElroy touched the boy as they showered together in the rectory of St. Francis de Sales Church in Barrington, New Jersey. A few weeks later, McElroy forced the child to have sexual intercourse.
When questioned about his actions, McElroy admitted to abusing the boy and saying he knew it was wrong.
McElroy was convicted of two counts of sexual abuse in 1989 and sentenced to 5 years in prison. The boy’s family later sued the Diocese of Camden, which was settled for $700k in 1990. The suit said the priest had threatened the child into silence with guns and knives.
In 1993, after he was released from prison, the Vatican defrocked McElroy at his request so he could marry. Additionally, he sued the Diocese of Camden because it would not pay his criminal defense fees.
McElroy is currently married and believed to be living in Kennett Square, New Jersey. He was not required to register as a sex offender.
McElroy’s name appears on the Diocese of Camden’s February 2019 list of credibly accused priests. According to Bishop Sullivan, the list, “includes those who admitted to the abuse, those who were found guilty after a trial in the church courts or the civil courts, and others against whom the evidence was so overwhelming as to be virtually unquestionable.”
Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Diocese of Camden in New Jersey. If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in New Jersey, contact our office today. In October 2020, the Camden Diocese filed for federal bankruptcy protection. The Court will resolve all claims of sexual abuse in this process but strict filing deadlines will apply and no late claims will be considered, so contact us today. Our lawyers have decades of experience representing survivors of clergy sexual abuse in New Jersey and nationwide. We can help.