“Pembroke priest charged in alleged 1985 sex assault” & related articles

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 The Ottawa Citizen

July 30, 2013 3:15 PM

By Meghan Hurley, OTTAWA CITIZEN 

OTTAWA — A 72-year-old Pembroke priest and former police chaplain faces charges in an historical sexual assault of a boy.

The investigation began in British Columbia in March 2013 before it was turned over to the Ontario Provincial Police in June.

The charges were laid after the victim made a complaint to police about an alleged sexual assault in 1985.

Police arrested Father Howard Chabot on Monday and charged him with sexual assault and gross indecency. Chabot was released from custody on a promise to appear in court on Sept. 3.

Chabot was a priest at Holy Name Parish in Pembroke when the alleged incident occurred, but he had also worked as a chaplain with the police force for 20 years.

David Hawkins, the Pembroke police chief before the force disbanded earlier this month, said Wednesday he hadn’t heard about the charges.

Hawkins described Chabot as an “honourable man” who retired as the force’s chaplain several years ago because of health problems.

Hawkins said Chabot’s main responsibility was to help police notify families in Pembroke when a relative died.

“He was certainly always a gentleman and very supportive of the police,” Hawkins said. “I speak very highly of him.”

Bruce Pappin, a spokesman for the Pembroke diocese, said Chabot was ordained as a priest in 1968. Chabot retired in 2005 from Our Lady of Lourdes parish in Pembroke because of heart problems.

The diocese said they will continue to co-operate with police and will help the victim through the healing process.

“The Diocese of Pembroke prays that the truth concerning this matter may be brought to light and extends support to any parties concerned in this case,” Bishop Michael Mulhall said in a statement.

Chabot’s arrest marked the fourth time in recent history a priest in the Pembroke diocese faces historical sexual assault charges.

Monsignor Robert Borne was handed a nine-month conditional sentence last year for indecently assaulting a local teen more than 30 years ago.

Daniel Miller, a retired Ottawa Valley priest, was charged with three counts each of gross indecency and indecent assault for offences that occurred between 1970 and 1980.

The alleged victims in that case were preteen boys and one man.

In January 2008, Msgr. Bernard Prince was found guilty of molesting 13 young boys between 1964 and 1984. The prominent priest had previously been given a Vatican post.

Even before the latest sexual assault charges, the Pembroke diocese had implemented a protocol for sexual abuse cases involving minors.

Listed under popular items on the Pembroke diocese website, the protocol calls the sexual assault of a child a “terrible crime” and “scandalous.”

A priest appointed by the diocese was put in charge of taking complaints of sexual assault involving children. The priest is obligated to report allegations that a child was sexually assaulted to the police. When an adult brings forward allegations of sexual assault, the priest will tell the victim to contact the police. If the adult doesn’t want a criminal investigation, the diocese will undertake their own by interviewing the victim and taking a formal statement.

The diocese will also provide counselling or spiritual guidance to the victims.

“The Diocesan Committee will attempt to immediately assess the situation and implement measures to minimize the trauma that inevitably flows from such a regrettable and scandalous incident,” the protocol states.

mhurley@ottawacitizen.com

twitter.com/meghan_hurley

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Retired priest in Pembroke, Ontario faces sex assault charges

Sun News

1:27 pm, July 30th, 2013

KELLY ROCHE | QMI AGENCY

OTTAWA – A 72-year-old priest has been charged in connection to a historical sex assault.

The alleged assault happened in 1985 while Howard Chabot was serving at Holy Name Parish in Pembroke, ON.

Chabot is charged with one count each of sexual assault and gross indecency.

“The Diocese of Pembroke prays that the truth concerning this matter may be brought to light and extends support to any parties concerned in this case,” the Bishop of Pembroke, the Most Reverend Michael Mulhall, said in a statement.

The diocese said it is co-operating with police “and will encourage and support the healing process for all parties concerned following the resolution of the case.”

Chabot, of Arnprior, ON, was ordained in 1968 and retired from Our Lady of Lourdes Church in Pembroke in 2005 due to coronary artery disease.

“There is some sadness, but it is different than quitting,” Chabot told QMI Agency in 2005. “There is contentment that I am leaving a parish happy. Departure is difficult, but I have a sense that I’m not checking out just yet.”

Over his 37-year career, Chabot served parishioners in Westmeath, La Passe, Braeside, and Sheenboro.

Chabot also worked as a youth probation officer, and chaplain for the Pembroke Jail and the Pembroke Police Service.

Chabot was released on a promise to appear and will be in Pembroke court Sept. 3.

Anyone with any information can call OPP Det.-Const. Marc Gauvin at 613-735-0188 or 1-888-310-1122, or contact Crime Stoppers.

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Retired Pembroke priest charged with sexual assault

The Pembroke Observer

Tuesday, July 30, 2013 2:12:29 EDT PM

By Tina Peplinskie, OBSERVER MULTIMEDIA JOURNALIST

A retired Catholic priest from the Diocese of Pembroke has been charged in relation to incident alleged to have occurred in 1985.

Father Howard Chabot was arrested July 29, 2013 and charged with one count of sexual assault and one count of gross indecency. The charges are the result of an investigation by the Upper Ottawa Valley Crime Unit, which began after a complainant came forward.

Chabot was serving at Holy Name Parish in Pembroke at the time of the alleged incident. He was ordained in 1968 and is now retired because of poor health, according to a release issued by the diocese on Monday.

“The Diocese of Pembroke prays that the truth concerning this matter may be brought to light and extends support to any parties concerned in this case,” the Most Reverend Michael Mulhall, the Bishop of Pembroke said in the release.

The Diocese of Pembroke has indicated it will continue to offer its complete co-operation with civil officials as the process unfolds and will encourage and support the healing process for all parties concerned following the resolution of the case.

Chabot was released on a promise to appear and office-in-charge undertaking. His next court appearance is Sept. 3, 2013 at the Ontario Court of Justice in Pembroke.

Police are requesting anyone with any information about this investigation to call Detective Constable Marc Gauvin at 613-735-0188 or 1-888-310-1122, or to contact Crime Stoppers.

Tina Peplinskie is a Daily Observer multimedia journalist

tina.peplinskie@sunmedia.ca

Twitter: @TPeplinskieOBS

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Retired priest in Pembroke faces sex assault charges

The Ottawa Sun

First posted: | Updated: Tuesday, July 30, 2013 02:47 PM EDT

By , Ottawa Sun

A 72-year-old Whitewater Region priest is facing charges in connection with a historical sex assault.

The incident allegedly took place in 1985 when Father Howard Chabot was serving at Holy Name Parish in Pembroke. Chabot is charged with one count each of sexual assault and gross indecency.

“The Diocese of Pembroke prays that the truth concerning this matter may be brought to light and extends support to any parties concerned in this case,” The Bishop of Pembroke, the Most Reverend Michael Mulhall said in a statement. The Diocese is cooperating with police “and will encourage and support the healing process for all parties concerned following the resolution of the case.”

Chabot, of Arnprior, was ordained in 1968 and retired from Our Lady of Lourdes Church in Pembroke in 2005 due to coronary artery disease.

“There is some sadness, but it is different than quitting,” Chabot told QMI Agency in 2005. “There is contentment that I am leaving a parish happy. Departure is difficult, but I have a sense that I’m not checking out just yet.”

Over his 37-year career, Chabot served parishioners in Westmeath, La Passe, Braeside, and Sheenboro.

Chabot also worked as a youth probation officer, and chaplain for the Pembroke Jail and the Pembroke Police Service.

Chabot was released on a promise to appear and will be in Pembroke court Sept. 3.

Anyone with any information can call OPP Det.-Const. Marc Gauvin at 613-735-0188 or 1-888-310-1122, or contact Crime Stoppers.

kelly.roche@sunmedia.ca

@ottawasunkroche

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Eastern Ontario priest faces sex charges in 1985 incident

Rev. Howard Chabot is a retired priest in the Roman Catholic diocese of Pembroke

Posted: Jul 30, 2013 10:34 AM ET

Last Updated: Jul 30, 2013 12:57 PM ET

A Pembroke, Ont., priest faces two charges including sexual assault in connection with an incident in 1985.

Ontario Provincial Police said a complainant came forward in regard to the incident in Pembroke 28 years ago.

Rev. Howard Chabot, a retired Catholic church priest, was charged with one count of sexual assault and one count of gross indecency.

He was released with a promise to appear in Pembroke court on Sept. 3.

Police want anyone with information about this investigation to call Det.-Const. Marc Gauvin at 613-735-0188 or 1-888-310-1122.

9 Responses to “Pembroke priest charged in alleged 1985 sex assault” & related articles

  1. Bill Rabishaw says:

    I have to say that I have an extremely hard time believing this story. I was an altar boy under Father Chabot for many years while I attended Holy Name School and even when I progressed into Bishop Smith Catholic High.

    This man was a mentor and a big part of my life. When I decided to get married in 2005, even though I was living in Ottawa, my wife and I chose Father Chabot to marry us. He taught me so much about life and was a big part in making me the man that I am today. It was because of him that I considered entering the priesthood.

    Nothing untoward ever happened and I can not fathom such a great man committing such a despicable act. I realize that the first instinct is to believe an accusation automatically once it is made but I implore everyone to give this man the benefit of the doubt. He has helped countless people throughout his career and deserves the support of each and every one of those individuals in this, his time of need.

    • Lina says:

      I agree Mr. Rabishaw, it’s hard to believe this is happening again to a member of a clergy from the Pembroke diocese.

      My basic instinct tells me that Father Howard Chabot will be well represented by his lawyer(s). His rights will be protected just like Msgr. Bernard Prince, Msgr. Robert Borne and Fr. Dan Miller were and still are.

  2. Mike Fitzgerald says:

    Bill;
    I can understand fully your sentiments regarding Fr. Chabot. Unfortunately most of us on this site are “jaded’ for want of a better word, and for VERY good reasons. I have said repeatedly that there is no doubt that the church and it’s staff have done a lot of good over the years, but these good works do not excuse deviant criminal behaviour.
    I can understand your devotion to a man who played an obviously big part in your life, but you must also realize that the Crown and the O.P.P. would not lay criminal charges if there was not credible evidence to support the charges.
    I also revered my abuser for a great number of years, until I started to realize through the help of many friends that I was NOT the guilty one.
    Hod Marshall (Windsor Ont. among many other places) was revered as an upstanding teacher, priest and mentor for many, as was Bernard Prince, Borne, etc. etc. etc. The pattern is always the same, unfortunately.
    It will all come out in “the wash”. Until then, just wait for the truth to come out, as it always does in the end. Mike.

  3. PJ says:

    And when they fall from “greatness”, the people that held them in that same esteem fall too. A sad statement that repeats itself over and over again. The pervert collars groom their victim and insulate themselves by becoming “that saint” for the rest of the congregation. Then IF the collar is charged, they have their blind sheep to protect them. Same old song and dance here.

  4. Tanya says:

    Clerical paedophiles are often superlatively charming and highly skilled manipulators. They need to be so as to keep one step ahead of the posse.

    It is precisely these strategies that has permitted these clerics to target with precision accuracy the vulnerable, the fragile and the broken.

    Ditto when “challenged” by religious and or secular authorities such clerics proffer masterful performances in dissimulation and disingenuousness.

    For such people paeodophilia is an pathological obsession. All energies are channeled into pursuing the target. There is no compassion , love , mercy or tenderness. It is about criminal self gratification on a gargantuan scale which haunts and ultimately ruins the victims life- in many cases until the day they die.

    Where there is one victim there will be more. It is the nature of this criminality. The issue now is for Mulhall to surrender Chabot’s personnel files to the investigators. They can meticulously retrace Chabot’s clerical history from parish to chaplaincy and from assignment to assignment and in so doing discover if there are further victims, more crimes and further betrayals of people who genuinely believed in him.

    What must not be permitted to happen is for Mulhall to conduct his own “inquiries”. The subsequent ” whitewash” will victimise the victims even further. How all of us have witnesses that familiar ecclesiastical trajectory; punish the whistleblower, reward the enabler and victimise the victim.

  5. PJ says:

    Tanya: You are bang on the mark. Thank you for your words, it offers hope to those of us that are not only fighting against the church, lawyers and pervert collar, but we also get put down by others who have never been abused or are in love with the charged collar. Thank you for supporting us!!

  6. Tanya says:

    Thank you PJ for your reply.

    I am particularly concerned at some of our bloggers misplaced loyalty to clerics who have been charged or even convicted of these rotten sinister crimes.

    We all must be clear as to what this crime entails; a miserable life sentence for the victims. A life characterised by a range of self destructive lifestyle practices- self, harm , suicide, imprisonment, psychiatric care and psychotropic medications, broken dysfunctional relationships, addiction and the proclivity to sexually abuse themselves.

    Such misery awaits all victims of clerical paedophilia.

    The Results?

    For the Church? A moral catastrophe and which has ultimately derailed the supernatural mission of the Church.

    For the Victims? The best treatment modality is Justice. This is what this site is about. Justice for the many many victims who have befallen this calamity.

  7. Gordon Sonier says:

    It has been a full calendar year since I came forward against this beast called Howard Chabot. I never did get justice for what he did to me. However I have loving family and friends that believe in me and have been there for me. I am still looking for anyone to come forward in this case so I can re open mine and get justice, however I have come to the fact that I may never get anyone else to come forward against this man because of the backing he has. The salvation army the Knights of Columbus the police and the hierarchy in the pope’s army. I am not afraid of this man anymore. I will continue to fight and I will never give up. I continue to read other articles on this site and every time I read a new article with other victims I sympathize with them cause I know exactly what they are going through. We as survivors of these horrific crimes have to stick together and support one another. Sylvia has been amazing as well. I am hopeful that one day we all get the justice we need. However they will have to answer to the almighty himself when they get to the pearly gates. I end with saying good wishes to all when it comes to getting justice and to let you all know my thoughts are with you all.

    I am a survivor hear me roar.
    Gordon Sonier

    • PJ says:

      If you haven’t pursued the pervert in the criminal courts, have you thought of litigating instead? Suing him or the diocese can send the same message…that you are fighting mad. It could take a long time but it is possible to do this I believe. It could also bring others out who were hurt by him as well. I pray for you to find the strength to continue the fight.

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