Fr. Wallace Harris – Archdiocese of New York

| Jul 26, 2020 | Abuser Profiles, Catholic Church

Father Wallace Harris

Archdiocese of New York

Ordained: 1972

Resigned: 2010

Removed: 2012

Assignment History:

  • 1972-1983: St. Joseph of the Holy Family (New York, NY)
  • 1977-1989: Cathedral Preparatory Seminary High School and College (Harlem, NY)
  • 1989-2008: Society of St. Vincent de Paul (Manhattan, NY)
  • 1990-2009: St. Charles Borromeo (Harlem, NY)
  • 1995-2005: Chairman at Archdiocesan Priests Council (New York, NY)
  • 2003-2004: St. Peter’s (New York, NY)
  • 2003-2008: Church of the Resurrection (Harlem, NY)
  • 2006-2010: Archdiocesan Consultors (New York, NY)
  • 2011-2019: Unknown

Summary of Sexual Abuse Allegations Against Father Wallace Harris:

With a prominent status in the Archdiocese of New York, Fr. Wallace Harris was accused in 2008 of sexually abusing a Cathedral Preparatory student in the 1980s when the boy was 13 years old. During the investigation, the Manhattan Attorney General’s Office discovered another alleged victim, who also said to have been abused as a young student at Cathedral Prep.

According to media reports, a third man publicly alleged in August 2008 that Harris had sexually molested him when he was aged 13-16, beginning in 1979. He said he came forward mainly to support the first two men who reported abuse by Harris. This accuser said that Harris baptized and confirmed him and that Harris was his godfather. He also claimed that Harris taught him when he was a student at both St. Joseph Elementary School and Cathedral Preparatory and that the two became so close, people referred to him as “little Father Harris.”

By September 2010, seven other men had come forward with allegations against Harris. Harris denied all of the allegations. He was not criminally charged due to the expiration of the statute of limitations. He resigned from the ministry in September 2010. In January 2012, Harris was sentenced to a life of prayer and penance by the Vatican but was not laicized.

Harris was named on the Archdiocese of New York’s 2019 List of Archdiocesan Clergy Credibly Accused of Sexual Abuse of a Minor or the Subject of Eligible IRCP Compensation Claims.

As of 2012, Harris lived in a Catholic facility under close supervision, although his current whereabouts and whether he has access to children are unknown.

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