Assignment Record -– Rev. Joseph D. Ross
St. Louis archbishop was John Joseph Carberry (1968-1979).
Immacolata had a school with 294-260 students.
Ross was arrested in 1972 and charged with committing a lewd and laschivious act. He'd been caught by police masturbating with two other men in a store bathroom. The charges were later dismissed.
• Ross was accused in a 2002 lawsuit of sexually abusing a 12-14-year-old boy at St. Williams' from1975-1977. His accuser said that in the Spring of 1977, after confession, Ross showed the boy a ping-pong paddle and told the boy to pull down his pants. The boy thought Ross was going to spank him; instead, he said, Ross sodomized him.
|MO||2/2||St. William's had a school with 256-176 students.|
Carberry was succeeded by John Lawrence May (1980-1992).
|1982||St. Bridget's||Pacific||MO||2/2||St. Bridget's had a school with 160-211 students.|
|1982||1986||St. Francis De Sales||St. Louis||MO||3/3||St. Francis' had a school with 226-301 students.|
|1986||1988||Christ the King||
• Ross was accused of grabbing and kissing an 11-year-old boy multiple times during confession at Christ the King in December 1986. He pleaded guilty in 1988 to sexually assaulting the boy.
Christ the King had a school with 196 students.
Data released by the archdiocese in Jan. 2014 shows that Ross was accused by three people prior to his 1988 conviction, and was accused by two others on "dates unkown."
Ross admitted to police during the 1988 investigation about his 1972 arrest for public indecency, and that he was arrested at some point at the Crestwood Plaza for propositioning an undercover police officer. He also admitted that he'd been accused of molesting an 8th grade boy at St. William's in the 1970s.
Ross is not indexed in the 1989 Directory.
Ross was sent to a Washington D.C. area inpatient mental health treatment program for 7 months, after his December 1988 sentencing.
Ross was allowed to resume ministry; parishioners were not informed of his history of sexual misconduct.
|St. Bernadette||Lemay||MO||A news report places Ross here but does not say when he worked in Lemay.|
|1989||1991||Corpus Christi||Jennings||MO||1/3, 1/4||
Corpus Christi had a school with 228 students.
Ross is listed in Jennings in the 1992 Directory, but a news report states that he began his assignment at St. Cronan's (see next entry) in 1991. He likely was transferred from Corpus Christi to St. Cronan's late in 1991, after the data for the 1992 Directory was collected in Fall 1991.
Justin Francis Rigali replaced May as St. Louis archbishop (1994-2003).
• Ross was arrested in September 2008 in Arkansas on charges of the molestation and rape of a child younger than 12 years-old. The abuse was said to have occurred from the late 1990s to the early 2000s, at St. Cronan's. His accuser said the abuse started when she was 5 or 6 years-old, while she was left in Ross' care so her mother could attend choir practice. Ross is said to have told the little girl that she was helping him with his sexuality because he liked boys better than girls.
St. Cronan's had a CCD program with 22 students.
Ross is not indexed beyond the 2002 Directory. He was removed from his parish in March 2002, due to his history of sexual misconduct. His laicization was announced by the Vatican in August 2002.
|2002||2014||Little Rock||AR||Ross moved to Arkansas after his removal from ministry. He was arrested there in September 2008 after a teen girl reported having been sexually abused by him eight years earlier, when the teen was younger than 12 years-old. The charges were dropped just before trial in August 2010. The girl filed suit in October 2011. In February 2014 the civil trial was delayed by a St. Louis City Judge, and re-scheduled for July 2014. The case was settled July 7, 2014.|
Sources: Official Catholic Directory (New York: P.J. Kenedy and Sons, 1970-2002)
• Archdiocese Ousts Priest from Church, He Was Accused of Sexual Abuse 15 Years Ago, Older Cases Are Being Reviewed, By Patricia Rice and Phillip O'Connor, St. Louis Post-Dispatch, March 1, 2002