Attorney General Mark R. Herring today announced former clergyman Scott Asalone, 63, of Asbury Park, NJ, was indicted on one felony count of carnal knowledge of a minor between 13 and 15 years old.
The indictment is related to alleged sexual contact by Asalone in 1985, while he was a friar assigned to St. Francis de Sales Catholic Church in Purcellville involving a former parishioner in 1985.
Asalone was taken into custody on Saturday, March 14 by the Virginia State Police and New Jersey law enforcement officials in Asbury Park, NJ and will face extradition to Virginia. The case will be tried in Loudoun County Circuit Court.
Following the arrest, DC City Councilman David Grosso issued a statement acknowledging that he was the victim in the case.
According to a February 2019, report of past sexual abuse allegations released by the Diocese of Arlington, Asalone was ordained in 1983, removed from public ministry in 1993 and dismissed form his religious order in 2007.
Asalone was identified through Attorney General Herring and Virginia State Police’s investigation into clergy abuse in Virginia.
“This is the first criminal indictment stemming from our ongoing investigation with Virginia State Police into potential clergy abuse,” Herring stated. “The investigation remains ongoing and if anyone has information related to this case or any other instance of abuse, I would encourage them to please contact us as soon as possible. I know that stepping forward to share your experience can be difficult or scary but I want you to know that, even if it happened years ago, we will still take it seriously and make sure you get the help and support you need.”
These are the first charges resulting from the ongoing state investigation into whether criminal sexual abuse of children may have occurred in Virginia’s Catholic dioceses and whether leadership in the dioceses may have covered up or abetted any such crimes.
If you or someone you know has additional information about these or other instances of abuse, please contact the Virginia Clergy Abuse Hotline at 1-833-454-9064 and VirginiaClergyHotline.com.