Fr. William C. Pierce – Diocese of Camden

| Mar 28, 2020 | Abuser Profiles, Catholic Church

Father William C. Pierce

Diocese of Camden

Retired: 2010

Assigned as Follows:

  • 1971-1974: St. Ann Parish (Wildwood, NJ)
  • 1995-1998: St. Matthew (National Park, NJ)
  • 1998-2000: St. Joan of Arc (Camden, NJ)
  • 2000-2010: St. John Bosco Parish (Millville, NJ)

Summary of Sexual Abuse Allegations against Father William C Pierce:

In March of 1999, an Atlantic City man filed a four-count complaint against the Roman Catholic Diocese of Camden and four priests, charging unwanted homosexual advances during his days as a seminary student. According to the victim, he claimed that the incidents all occurred after he began his religious studies in the mid-1980s, and went on for about 8-9 years. He alleged that Father William C Pierce and Father Anthony J. Manuppella discussed homosexual lifestyles and urged him to visit gay bars with them. The suit also claims that Pierce talked frequently about “sexual acts prohibited by the teachings and customs of the Roman Catholic Church.” 

The lawsuit states that Father William P. Brennan and Father John T. Frey, both supervisors, did not stop the improper activity that was brought to their attention by the accuser. Brennan was also accused of acting in “an abusive and hostile manner and created a hostile working and educational environment.” 

In November of 1993, the Diocese granted the victim’s request for a voluntary leave of absence. When he did not return, the Diocese terminated his candidacy for the priesthood in August of 1995. Following the termination, the victim received a letter from Father John T. Frey, the Director of Vocations. The letter was informing him that he owed the Diocese a total of $69,002.57 for his tuition, books, loans, and even counseling. Eventually, the lawsuit was dismissed when New Jersey’s highest court decided the matter violated the Fire Amendment’s Free Exercise of Religion Clause. 

According to news reports, William C. Pierce retired from the priesthood in October of 2010. He was last known living in New Jersey, but his status as a priest and where he went after his retirement 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 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.

Contact us at 888-283-9922 or [email protected] to discuss your options today.