Bishop Tod Brown
Diocese of Orange
Assigned as follows:
- 1964-1966 Our Lady of Perpetual Help ( ,CA)
- 1967 St. Francis-Xavier (Seaside, CA)
- 1968 On Duty Outside Diocese
- 1969-1971 St. Jude’s (Marina, CA)
- 1972-1973 Monterey Diocesan Headquarter (Monterey, CA)
- 1974-1976 St. Jude Church (Marina, CA)
- 1977-1987 St. Francis Xavier Church (Seaside, CA)
- 1988-1997 Diocese of Boise (Boise, ID)
- 1998-2012 Diocese of Orange (Orange, CA)
Summary of Abuse Allegations against Bishop Tod Brown:
Bishop Tod Brown was ordained in 1963 in the Diocese of Monterey-Fresno, who also served in the Diocese of Orange. By December 1988, he was named Bishop of Boise. He returned to California as Bishop of Orange ten years later in 1998. According to media reports, a man came forward in 1997 to allege sexual abuse by Bishop Brown in Bakersfield in 1965 when he was 12 yrs old. The man produced copies of correspondence to and from the Diocese of Fresno in July 1997 regarding the alleged abuse. He also wrote to Cardinal Mahony in 2002. Bishop Brown denied the accusation.
Bishop Brown proclaimed the diocese a “safe haven” free of pedophile priests as early as 2001, after another abuse-case settlement required a lengthy review of its personnel files. That review led to the removal of clerics who had worked for years despite admitting abuse.
In 2004, Bishop Brown released the names of clergy accused of child sexual abuse in his diocese. As head of the 1.2-million person Diocese of Orange County, he oversaw a $100 million settlement to victims of sexual abuse that year. At the time, the settlement was the largest ever.
In 2007, he initiated a new sex abuse policy called “The Covenant With the Faithful.” He promised a new era of transparency for sex abuse claims, but failed to disclose that he, himself was personally accused of child sexual abuse. He explained that the omission of his name was …”because it was very embarrassing and very painful.” He said the church had investigated and the accusation was deemed to be without merit.
Bishop Brown was known to have a history of repudiating victims, covering up sexual abuse, and continually employing perpetrators. He “was part of the culture of secrecy,” said one Irvine attorney who has represented victims of clergy abuse. “He continued policies that put kids in danger, and he didn’t remove problem priests until a legal shotgun was put to his head. … A victim of sexual abuse shouldn’t have to hire a lawyer to get a faith-based institution to do the right thing.”
Bishop Brown retired in Septemebr 2012, at age 75, and is believed to be living in Orange, California. His current access to children is unknown.
Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Diocese of Orange in California. If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in one of California’s Catholic dioceses, contact our office today. Although many years have passed, those abused by Catholic clergy in the Diocese of Orange now have legal options due to a temporary change in California law, but filing deadlines will apply so do not delay in reaching out to us. Our lawyers have decades of experience representing survivors of clergy sexual abuse in California and nationwide. We can help.