Father Ricardo Fajardo
Archdiocese of New York
- 1990: Archdiocese of New York
- 1999-2010: St. Catherine of Genoa (Manhattan, NY)
- 2011-2019: Holy Spirit (Bronx, NY)
Summary of Sexual Abuse Allegations Against Father Ricardo Fajardo:
In 2019, a lawsuit was filed against the Archdiocese of New York by an NYC woman that allegedly was sexually abused by Fr. Ricardo Fajardo when she was a minor in 1999. Now 37, the victim claims Fajardo was working at St. Catherine of Genoa in Manhattan, New York when he offered to give her a ride, drove her back to the church rectory, and invited her to lay in his bed.
According to the lawsuit, she claims Fajardo gave her alcohol, groped and kissed her, and then raped her. The victim claims Fajardo “used his position as a dignified religious leader to ingratiate himself with my family as a trusted and respected individual.”
Fajardo remained in ministry despite the allegation. According to media reports, in May 2021, Fajardo voluntarily stepped down as pastor of Holy Spirit in the Bronx following a series of protests at his parish following comments he made regarding an ongoing conflict between Haiti and the Dominican Republic. The Archdiocese claimed the removal was relating to an allegation that Fajardo sexually abused a St. Catherine of Genoa parishioner in the 1990s. Fajardo still denies all allegations.
It is unclear if they are referring to the 2019 allegation or a new, second allegation. In the event it relates to the 2019 allegation, no explanation was offered as to why the Archdiocese waited more than two years to take action, despite a “zero tolerance” policy toward abuse allegations.
The fact that Fajardo stepped down voluntarily, rather than be removed suggests that the move is unrelated to sexual abuse allegations altogether. If that is the case, this is not the first time that the Archdiocese of New York has failed to take any action against an accused priest, despite public promises to the contrary.
In 2017, Horowitz Law attorney, Jessica Arbour, stood outside the Archdiocese’s chancery telling the media that the Archdiocese of New York failed to remove Fr. Lawrence J. Quinn even months after she said her then-client made an allegation of abuse against Quinn in the Archdiocese’s voluntary settlement program.
Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Archdiocese of New York. If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest or other Catholic clergy in New York State, contact our office today. Although many years have passed, those abused by Catholic clergy in the Archdiocese of New York now have legal options, 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 New York and nationwide. We can help.