Judge: Alleged 2nd victim in area priest’s rape case can testify, for now

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

Caption
Officials from the Archdiocese of Cincinnati held a news conference on Monday, Aug. 5, 2019, regarding suspended priest Geoff Drew, who once was assigned to a Liberty Twp. church.

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

CINCINNATI — An alleged second victim of Rev. Geoff Drew will be allowed to testify in the priest’s trial, Judge Leslie Ghiz said Tuesday.

Drew, 58, is accused of assaulting a former altar boy in Cincinnati repeatedly from 1988 to 1991 and stands charged with nine counts of rape. New information about an alleged second victim came out during a motion hearing on Tuesday.

Drew also was assigned to churches in Liberty Twp. and Beavercreek during his career.

The Catholic priest was not in the courtroom when prosecutor Katherine Pridemore addressed Ghiz about the alleged second victim.

Pridemore said Drew was not charged with sexually assaulting the second victim because of statute of limitations. Like the first victim, the alleged second victim is a man who attended St. Jude School in Green Township at the same time as the first victim, according to Pridemore.

Pridemore said both boys were under the age of 13 when the alleged abuse occurred, and Drew groomed and abused both boys in similar ways. Pridemore argued the second alleged victim’s testimony should fall under the category of “character evidence” because Drew’s behavior was all part of “one big plan” to groom and abuse children.

Drew’s defense attorney, Brandon Moermond, said the state shouldn’t be able to include the other alleged victim because it’s not the same case.

Moermond also argued the state should not be allowed to include testimony of witnesses who claimed Drew made them uncomfortable by rubbing their shoulders and texting them.

Although Ghiz ruled Tuesday the alleged second victim can testify, she said this could change after she reviews additional records.

Drew’s trial is scheduled for April 26 and could take up to two weeks. Drew is being held in the Hamilton County Justice Center on a $5 million bond.

Drew’s complete career history is as follows, per the archdiocese. Some assignments overlap.

  • Music teacher at Elder High School — 1983-1990
  • Music minister at St. Jude Parish — 1984-1999
  • Mount St. Mary’s Seminar of the West — 1999-2004
  • Internship year at St. Anthony Madisonville — 2001-2002
  • Ordained a priest of the archdiocese — 2004
  • Parochial vicar at St. Luke Beavercreek — July 1, 2004-June 30, 2005
  • Pastor of St. Rita Dayton — July 1, 2005-June 30, 2009
  • Pastor of St. Maximilian Kolbe — July 1, 2009-June 30, 2018
  • Pastor of St. Ignatius of Loyola — July 1, 2018-July 23, 2019

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