Deacon Donald “Tim” Hackman – Diocese of Harrisburg

| Apr 15, 2020 | Abuser Profiles

Deacon Donald “Tim” Hackman

Diocese of Harrisburg

Assigned as Follows:

  • 1983-2000 St. James (Lititz, PA)


Summary of Sexual Abuse Allegations against Deacon Donald “Tim” Hackman:

According to the Pennsylvania Grand Jury report, Deacon Donald Hackman was convicted in federal court of sending child pornography. The Diocese of Harrisburg’s restricted file for Donald “Tim” Hackman contained a resignation letter dated January 22nd, 1999, and a decree dated February 3rd, 1999. Hackman had mailed child pornography to an undercover law enforcement officer. Bishop Dattilo issued a Decree, and noted Hackman’s “sincere and credible display of remorse.” He was then forbidden to exercise functions of any ecclesiastical office. The restricted documents also showed the Diocese offered and followed through with counseling for Hackman. 

The allegations against Hackman were reported in a newspaper in 2001, and he pled guilty to the federal charges of distributing child pornography. Parishioners of Hackman’s former church then complained to the Diocese of Harrisburg after the newspaper article was released. The diocese had not notified the parishioners of the real reason for Hackman’s departure. The only justification for hiding the information was “civil authorities saw no reason to make the arrest public, which they would have done if they felt that it was necessary to protect children or to gain testimony from others.” 

Donald Hackman has been included on the Diocese of Harrisburg updated list of accused clergy as of August 1st, 2018. He was also included in the PA Grand Jury report on August 14th, 2018. 

In February 2020, the Diocese of Harrisburg filed for bankruptcy protection. As part of its bankruptcy, the Diocese of Harrisburg will be reviewing and paying claims for anyone sexually abused by diocesan priests and lay employees. This will likely include claims filed on behalf of anyone whose case may be beyond the statute of limitations. Ahead of the grand jury report, the Diocese of Harrisburg released the names of 71 priests, seminarians and laypersons accused of sexually abusing children since 1941. This was from the updated list that the diocese released in August of 2018. After the report was released, the total was over 301 identified and accused priests in Pennsylvania alone.

Donald “Tim” Hackman is reported by the diocese as still living, but his current location and whether or not he has been officially removed from ministry is unknown. 


Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims of sexual abuse in the Diocese of Harrisburg and throughout Pennsylvania. The Diocese of Harrisburg filed for federal bankruptcy protection in February 2020. Anyone sexually abused by a priest or employee of the Diocese of Harrisburg may be entitled to file a claim against the Diocese in these bankruptcy proceedings, but very strict filing deadlines apply.  Most victims of abuse in the Diocese of Harrisburg will never be able to take action against the Diocese of Harrisburg if they miss this bankruptcy filing deadline, so it is important that you contact us immediately to discuss your potential case.   

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