St. John the Baptist Church in Harrison.
(Harrison, Oh.) - Hundreds of thousands of dollars were allegedly embezzled from three Archdiocese of Cincinnati parishes, including Saint John the Baptist Church in Harrison.
The archdiocese has filed a lawsuit Monday against Thomas Shaun Martin. Martin was the former business manager for parishes at St. John the Baptist, St. John the Evangelist in Deer Park, and Holy Family in Price Hill.
According to an announcement from the archdiocese, it and the parishes seek the return of not less than $353,000 believed to have been embezzled by Martin, who had worked at each parish.
“Extensive, strengthened financial controls instituted by the archdiocese across all of its 214 churches led to the discovery, today’s lawsuit, and the archdiocese’s separate pursuit of criminal sanctions against Martin through county authorities,” said Dan Andriacco, director of communications for the archdiocese.
Addriacco added that the archdiocese will pursue restitution through all available civil and criminal means.
St. John the Baptist Rev. Jeffery Kemper told parishioners in an August church bulletin that approximately $80,000 had gone missing from the church’s funds.
“I am angry that someone deceived us into trusting him, and, as everyone is struggling to bring in more money, it was also going out in someone’s pocket,” Kemper wrote.
Martin, who has since been fired by the archdiocese, does not face criminal charges – at least not yet. There has been an ongoing investigation by the Hamilton County Prosecutor’s Office into the alleged embezzlement.