"St. Peter's Basilica Early Morning" by Andreas Tille / CC BY-SA 4.0

A year later: More than 100 Buffalo priests linked to sex allegations

Feb 27, 2019

By Mike McAndrew and Aaron Besecker

It started with a victim holding a news conference on a street corner and a Buffalo News reporter knocking on a retired priest’s door.

One year ago today, the Rev. Norbert F. Orsolits admitted to reporter Jay Tokasz that he had molested “probably dozens” of boys, sparking a scandal that has continued to roil the Catholic Diocese of Buffalo.

Michael Whalen’s news conference, where he accused Orsolits of sexually abusing him, prompted dozens of other victims to accuse priests of abuse, the diocese to publicly identify priests credibly accused of abusing children for the first time, and eventually calls for Bishop Richard J. Malone’s resignation.

More than 100 priests who worked in the Buffalo area have been publicly linked to sex allegations, according to Buffalo News reports, public records and lists of abusers prepared by the diocese and religious orders.

Only a handful were arrested. Even fewer were sent to prison. Very few of the victims successfully sued.

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