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4th Alleged Victim Accuses Father John Crews of Sex Abuse

A fourth man has filed allegations with the state Attorney General’s office accusing former local priest John Crews of sexual abuse when the man was a teenager.

Michael Holden, now 43, was a teenager and a resident of Hanna Boys Center when he alleges that Father Crews, then executive director of the center, sexually abused him during the years of 1991 to late 1993.

Holden spoke publicly for the first time on Tuesday, calling for other victims to come forward and report the abuse and seek help.

“I’m a survivor,” Holden said. “Right now my sole purpose is let the general public know what’s happening, hopefully reach out to the other fellow victims who are still suffering and letting them know that we are here fighting for them. (That they) should take a stand, don’t be ashamed of what you’ve been put through.”

Holden and his attorney, Joe George of Sacramento, filed a report with the Attorney General’s office accusing Crews of sexual abuse that Holden said started almost “immediately” after arriving at the boys home when he was 16 and escalated over time.

Holden and Crews continued to have a correspondence relationship after Holden left Hanna, though Crews “stopped having correspondence” with Holden in 2015, said David Clohessy, a victim advocate with the group Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, or SNAP, who joined Holden and George Tuesday afternoon at a press conference outside of St. Francis Solano Catholic Church.

Holden compared his continuing relationship with Crews to Stockholm syndrome, a psychological condition that occurs when hostages develop an alliance with their captors as a survival strategy.

Crews preyed on Holden’s vulnerability, Holden said, “as pedophiles do.”

Read more at Sonoma Index Tribune