Father William E. Krouse
Archdiocese of Baltimore/Washington
- 1970s: St. Francis Catholic Deaf Center (Landover Hills, MD)
- 1970s: Maryland School for the Deaf (Frederick, MD)
Summary of Abuse Allegations Against Father William E. Krouse
Father William E. Krouse (aka Jay Krouse) was a Catholic priest who worked in the Archdiocese of Baltimore. In 2019, Krouse was listed on the Archdiocese of Baltimore’s Credibly Accused of Sexual Abuse of Minors list. In 2018, Krouse’s name appeared on the Archdiocese of Washington’s list of clergy credibly accused of sexual abuse of minors. In April 2023, Maryland’s Attorney General released a report alleging 156 Catholic clergy members sexually abused at least 600 children over six decades. The report lists the names of the abusers, including Father Krouse. In 1987, Father Krouse voluntarily resigned his priesthood, but his name still showed he was on leave per the 1990 Catholic directory.
According to the report, in March 1996, the Archdiocese of Washington received an allegation that Father Krouse sexually abused a deaf and mute child on several occasions between 1968 and 1972. Police said the former pastor of St. Francis Catholic Deaf Center admitted to abusing a student at the Landover Hills school when confronted. Krouse was arrested and jailed in Florida, where he lived at the time, and was then extradited to Maryland. Police said Father Krouse cultivated a relationship with the victim and sexually abused him several times.
A few months later, in 1996, the Prince George’s County police learned that Krouse abused six boys when he was a teacher and pastor at the Maryland School for the Deaf in Frederick and the St. Frances Catholic Deaf Center in Landover between 1970 to 1978. His victims, all deaf, included three brothers. The reports state that he befriended the boys, who were all between 10 and 14 years old. According to media reports, the abuse included masturbation, fondling, and fellatio. At different times, Krouse took all six boys to the wrestling room of Cole Field House at the University of Maryland, where his father was the varsity wrestling coach. He would show the boy the sauna and the steam room, offer a massage, remove his and the boys’ clothes, then sexually abuse them. Krouse quoted the bible to his victims as authority condoning the behavior. His abuse of the brothers occurred in other locations as well.
In September 1996, Father Krouse pleaded guilty to six counts of molesting several deaf boys. The State’s Attorney, Jack B. Johnson, said Krouse had ensnared his victims through two levels of deceit. He befriended the boys and their parents under the pretext of wanting to learn sign language. “Most egregious of all, he argued that the Bible justified these acts,” Johnson said. “He was touching me near my private parts. . . . I said, ‘I don’t want that,” one of the victims said. “I felt like I could not get away. There was no one to help me.” He said Krouse lost his temper and became enraged when he tried to resist one time.
“I was trying to leave. I said I didn’t like this. I said I didn’t want to do this anymore,” the man said. “But he said I was being a baby. He started slapping me, pushing me, and kicking me.”
In November 1996, Krouse was sentenced to a maximum of six concurrent terms of 10 years in prison as part of a plea bargain. He does not appear on the Maryland Sex Offender Registry.
In 2018, a woman reported that her husband, who is deaf, was sexually abused by Krouse in the 1970s at the Catholic Deaf Center in Landover. The Archdiocese of Baltimore notified the Archdiocese of Washington and made the mandated reports to authorities.
Krouse is believed to be residing in the Brooklyn, Maryland, area. He is not a registered sex offender.
Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Archdiocese of Baltimore in Maryland. If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in Maryland, contact our office today. Our lawyers have decades of experience representing survivors of clergy sexual abuse nationwide. We can help. Contact us at 888-283-9922 or [email protected] to discuss your options today.