Fr. Richard McCormick (Salesians) – Archdiocese of New Orleans

| May 27, 2020 | Abuser Profiles, Catholic Church

Father Richard McCormick

Archdiocese of New Orleans

Ordained: 1970

Removed: 2002

Died: 2020

Assigned as follows:

  • < 1970-1971   St. Dominic Savio High School (Boston, MA)
  • 1971-1975      Salesian Prep School; Resident Junior Seminary; Camp Salesian for Boys; Retreat House for Boys; Salesian Boys Club (Cedar Lake, IN)
  • 1975-1976      Unknown
  • 1976-1980      Salesian Junior Seminary (Goshen, NY)
  • 1980-1985      Don Bosco Retreat Center (West Haverstraw, NY)
  • 1980s              Camp Salesian/ Sacred Heart Retreat Center and Seminary (Ipswich, MA)
  • 1985-1991      Salesian Provincial House (New Rochelle, NY)
  • 1991-1992      St. Rosalie’s (Harvey, LA)
  • 1992-1998      Don Bosco Technical High School (Boston, MA)
  • 1992-1998      St. John Bosco Chapel (Boston, MA)
  • 1998-2000      Savio Preparatory High School (Boston, MA)
  • 2000-2002      St. Petersburg Catholic High School (St. Petersburg, FL)
  • 2002-2005      Unknown
  • 2005-2009      NY Marian Shrine (Stony Point, NY)

Summary of Abuse Allegations against Father Richard McCormick:

Father Richard McCormick, a Salesian priest, served as a teacher or director at Salesian retreat houses, boys’ camps and various schools in Massachusetts, New York, Indiana and Florida throughout his career. In the six years before his time at St. Rosalie, he led the New York-based office, or Eastern Province, which supervised Salesians in New Orleans and many other places.

According to media reports, in 2002, he was removed from his position at St. Petersburg Catholic High amid an accusation of sexually harassing a female student.

It is unknown where he was assigned between 2002 and 2005. At some point, though, in the 2000s the Salesians settled with a man who alleged Father McCormick raped him on a trip to Rome in 1975 when he was a 14-year-old Salesian Prep student in Cedar Lake IN.

In August 2009, the Order announced a settlement with three more men alleging child sexual abuse by Father McCormick in the late 1970s at Salesian Junior Seminary in Goshen, NY. Three others came forward soon after. He was suspended from ministry.

In August 2012, Father McCormick was arrested for the rape of a boy, ages 9 and 10, at the Salesian camp for underprivileged children in Ipswich MA in 1981 and 1982. He pleaded not guilty, but was convicted in November 2014 and sentenced to 8 to 10 years in prison, followed by 10 years’ probation. His victim filed a civil suit in March 2015.

According to court records, Father McCormick would take the boy from his bed to the camp office to abuse him. He would also abuse the boy in a storage closet. His victim said he was so terrified he would hide under his older brother’s bed, on a fire escape or in the woods. The boy knew McCormick as “Fr. Dick.”

Father McCormick was arrested again in April 2013, on charges of raping a 6- to 8-year-old boy at the same camp between 1981 and 1983. He once again pleaded not guilty, but later pleaded guilty to reduced charges. His victim said the priest would have him sit on his lap and that “it hurt.” In August 2015, he was convicted and sentenced to another 8- to 10-year prison sentence, to run concurrently with the sentence he was already serving.

At least 17 people are reportedly known to have alleged they were sexually abused as children by Father McCormick, some as early as 1963.

In December 2019, Father McCormick’s name was added on the Archdiocese of New Orleans’ list of clergy credibly accused of sex abuse of minors, after the Associated Press asked why it was missing.  In February 2020, his name was added to the Diocese of Columbus’s list. In 2021, his name was added on the Salesian’s 2021 List of Clergy Credibly Accused of Sexual Abuse of a Minor. McCormick died in prison in April 2020.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims of sexual abuse in the Archdiocese of New Orleans.  The Archdiocese of New Orleans filed for federal bankruptcy protection in April 2020.  Our lawyers are now offering free legal consultations to discuss your legal options as a survivor of sexual abuse by priests and other employees of the New Orleans Archdiocese.

Very strict filing deadlines will soon be set by the Bankruptcy Court.  Most victims of abuse will never be able to recover damages if they miss this deadline, so please contact us to discuss your case today.  Call us at 888-283-9922 or send an e-mail to [email protected].