Msgr. Anthony Herdegen – Diocese of Fresno

On Behalf of | Aug 3, 2020 | Abuser Profiles, Catholic Church

Father Anthony Herdegen 

Diocese of Fresno

Ordained: 1946

Retired: 1995 

Died: 2009

Assigned as Follows: 

  • 1947-1948 Our Lady of Guadalupe (Bakersfield, CA)
  • 1949 Sacred Heart (Fresno, CA)
  • 1950-1952 Diocesan Assignment (Fresno, CA)
  • 1953 St. Patrick (Watsonville, CA)
  • 1954 St. Patrick (Kerman, CA) 
  • 1955-1959 Holy Angels (Santa Margarita, CA) 
  • 1960-1976 St. John’s (Wasco, CA)
  • 1977-1978 Holy Rosary (Hilmar, CA)
  • 1979-1980 Our Lady of Lourdes (Corcoran, CA)
  • 1981-1982 St. Anne (Porterville, CA)
  • 1983-1984 St. Mary (Taft, CA)
  • 1985-1995 St. Jude (Kern River, CA)

Summary of Sexual Abuse Allegations against Father Anthony Herdegen: 

Fr. Anthony Herdegen was ordained a priest in 1946, who served in the Diocese of Fresno. According to media reports, in 2003, he was accused of sexually abusing two brothers who attended St. John’s Parish in Wasco, California. The first brother who came forward alleged Fr. Herdegen had abused him starting when he was 5-years-old, all the way until he was 19-years-old. His older brother then came forward and claimed he was also sexually assaulted by Fr. Herdegen after her tried to protect his younger brother. He alleged abuse from the ages of 10-years-old until he was 15-years-old.

There was an investigation done by Kern County Sheriff’s Department but due to the statute of limitations, the case was not pursued.

In 2008, a Court of Appeals ruled that the lawsuit could go forward due to Cardinal Mahony’s testimony against him. Later, the court unanimously agreed that Fr. Herdegen had sexually abused the brothers but the Church had no knowledge of the incidents and therefore, were not liable. During the trial, it was reported that one of the plaintiff’s attorneys received a phone call from a man claiming he too had been abused by Fr. Herdegen. He said the abuse happened in 1967, and he had told the school principal himself, but no actions were ever taken.

As of 2009, Fr. Herdegen has admitted to sexually abusing the two brothers and has still remained a retired priest in good standing. He was listed as deceased that same year. 

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Diocese of Fresno in California.  If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in one of California’s Catholic dioceses, contact our office today. Although many years have passed, those abused by Catholic clergy in the Diocese of Fresno now have legal options due to a temporary change in California law, 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 California and nationwide. We can help. 

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