Thursday, December 11, 2008


Category: Life

Brad Listi's

Hyper-Caffeinated Self-Interview 1
Tuesday, December 9, 2008

prompted this search.

I've made confessions here.

Detailed my woeful past.

I found an article about the priest that molested me when I was in treatment for depression and suicidal ideation:

Phony cleric arrested in thefts from churches

Arizona Daily Star
TUCSON, Ariz. - Michael Dongarra was just a few minutes late for morning prayers Thursday when FBI agents and local police arrested him at a small Massachusetts abbey. But he was almost a year overdue for his Pima County Superior Court date. Dongarra was wanted in Oro Valley for stealing religious artifacts from churches and filing bogus insurance claims. He was convicted in absentia of multiple theft and fraud charges about six months ago, said Oro Valley police Lt. Becky Mendez. Authorities arrived to find the monks in morning prayer and asked a janitor if they knew which one was Dongarra. At that exact moment a man came strolling down the hall, late, said Avery Mann, a spokesman for ....America's Most Wanted.'' It was Dongarra. A Pennsylvania priest had tipped off authorities to his location after seeing Saturday's segment of the TV show, which featured Dongarra. The Rev. Nicholas Morcone, abbot of the Glastonbury Abbey, said he and the other monks were shocked to learn that Dongarra, who had been studying to become a monk, posed as a priest while stealing religious artifacts from at least three California churches and one in Tucson. ....It's going to take a little while to accept,'' he said. Morcone described Dongarra, believed to be 51, as a hard-working man who arrived at the Benedictine monastery in April with the intent of joining the group. He was well-read, intelligent and personable, Morcone said. Morcone had no way of knowing that Dongarra had skipped bail and failed to show up for a court date in November 1996. Dongarra ate three meals a day with the 12 monks and attended prayer services, Morcone said. He lived in a small room in a house reserved for monk candidates on the abbey grounds. His meager quarters contrasted sharply with the rented house he left in Oro Valley. ....It looked like a museum,'' said Detective Bud Novak of the Oro Valley Police Department. ....He had all kinds of fancy-looking things. He had an actual altar set up in one of his rooms.'' Novak first went to Dongarra's Oro Valley home on Sept. 11, 1994, after Dongarra claimed that religious items had been stolen from his house. Novak became suspicious when Dongarra filed a second burglary report on Dec. 25, 1995. He called the National Insurance Crime Bureau, which keeps tabs on all insurance claims in the United States, and found that Dongarra had reported some of the same items stolen in 1993 in Kansas City, he said. After talking to church officials in California, detectives recalled seeing some of the churches' missing pieces in Dongarra's house when they responded to his burglary calls. They discovered most of the ....stolen'' items belonged to the California churches, including a 19th century German Gothic altar adornment valued at $36,000, a tabernacle, candelabra and sanctuary candles, Novak said. Novak said Dongarra had been moving from church to church to steal items. ....Every time his past would catch up with him, he'd have to move to another church,'' Novak said. Oro Valley police arrested Dongarra in April 1996. In all, more than $100,000 worth of religious artifacts were recovered from his home, including two paintings on his living room wall that had been reported stolen from St. Philip's in the Hills Episcopal Church. Dongarra was convicted about six months ago, said Lt. Mendez. His parents, who live in New York, posted his $40,000 bond. Most of that was returned after they wrote to the court saying it was their life savings, said Cindi Ryan, an assistant state attorney general. At one time, Dongarra was a priest at St. Jude's Anglican Church, but officials there removed his priest status after they discovered he had been convicted in 1983 of Medicaid fraud in Massachusetts, Novak said. ....There's no question in my mind that he was definitely a fake,'' said Robert Wilkes, a priest at St. Jude's. Before his 1996 arrest, Dongarra was working on plans to start his own church, called St. Thomas More Guild, Novak said. He planned to use a $450,000 home that he was building near Silverbell and Sweetwater roads for services, Novak recalled. Novak said Dongarra was living off money from his insurance fraud - ....until we stepped into his life and ruined it all.''
©1996-7 Mercury Center.

I honestly believe that he behaved so irrationally and got caught because of me. He was fired from the hospital and went missing until his capture in the above story.

Here's another article:

Fake priest gets 21-year prison term

By The Associated Press
TUCSON, Ariz. -- Michael Dongarra was a man of many faces: doctor of psychology, head of an alcohol and drug treatment center, Anglican priest and husband.
But authorities say Dongarra, 51, is a con artist who cloaked himself in a clergyman's robe as he stole religious artifacts from churches and bilked insurance companies with false claims.
Judge John E. Davis of Pima County Superior Court on Friday ordered Dongarra to prison for 21 years.
A Pima County jury convicted the Harvard-educated psychologist in May 1997 of two fraud charges, two theft charges and one charge of attempted fraud.
The counts related to bilking about $100,000 from insurance companies and stealing religious items from two California churches.
But Dongarra wasn't around to hear the jury's verdict. He had fled Tucson in November 1996, the same day he was supposed to enter a plea bargain that would have resulted in a five-year prison sentence.
Massachusetts authorities arrested him a year later posing as an Anglican priest at a monastery in Hingham, Mass., after he was featured on the television program "America's Most Wanted." He was extradited to Tucson in January.
Another jury convicted Dongarra -- also in absentia -- on two separate fraud charges related to insurance scams in August 1997. His sentencing on those counts is scheduled for May 28. Dongarra declined to make a statement in court.
Church officials removed Dongarra from his position at St. Jude's Anglican Church in May 1995 after they discovered he had been convicted in 1983 of Medicaid fraud in Massachusetts.
Dongarra, who had supervised psychologists at four nursing homes in Massachusetts, billed Medicaid for more than $70,000 of work never performed, authorities said.
Dongarra received a suspended sentence and five years' probation for the fraud.
He later became the head of an alcohol and drug treatment center in Falmouth, Mass., and met his wife about that time. Dongarra was married for a year before his wife discovered he had lied about his criminal past.
Oro Valley police arrested Dongarra in April 1996 after an investigation that was prompted by Dongarra's filing of several phony insurance claims on religious items he said were stolen from his house.
When police served a search warrant on the house, they described Dongarra's home as looking like a museum filled with ornate religious items.
Dongarra had taken a $36,000 gold German Gothic altar adornment, along with artwork from the Sisters of Mercy Convent in Burlingame, Calif., near San Francisco. He also stole a tabernacle, large candlesticks, chalices and other religious items from St. Elizabeth's Church in San Jose, Calif. .. --> ===== Place Photo caption ** above ** this Line ===== -->.. --> ===== Start of navigation table ===== -->

And Another:

Catholic World News (CWN)
Feature Stories

Priest-Imposter Arrested At Massachusetts Abbey (Subscribe to RSS Feed)

Nov. 21, 1997

HINGHAM, Massachusetts (CWN) - The FBI arrested an Arizona man who had posed as priest and stolen more than $1 million from churches nationwide at a Benedictine abbey in Massachusetts on Thursday.

Michael Dongarra, 51, had stayed at the small Glastonbury Abbey since April when he joined the community of 11 monks. Dongarra had allegedly posed as an Anglican priest in the past, using his assumed position to steal more $1 million over 12 years through theft and fraud. He was arrested in Oro Valley, Arizona in April 1996, but fled before his trial, according to a police spokesman. He was tried in absentia on some of the charges and was found guilty. He will be held in Hingham pending extradition to Arizona.

Father Nicholas Morcone, abbot at Glastonbury, said Dongarra passed the normal screening process for men wanting to join their community and came with all the necessary recommendations. Dongarra was profiled on the Fox network television show "America's Most Wanted" last Sunday, and a Pennsylvania priest called the show to report Dongarra's whereabouts. Father Morcone said that unfortunately none of the monks watch "America's Most Wanted."

And another:

Fake priest also duped Massachusetts Medicaid

By The Associated Press
BOSTON -- A man arrested last week after faking his way into a Hingham monastery to escape the law also put one over on the Massachusetts Medicaid system.
Prosecutors say that while supervising psychologists assigned to nursing homes in 1983, Michael Dongarra personally billed the state for $70,000 in services he never performed. Some of the patients were dead at the time he said he treated them.
"He made up bogus progress notes for patients who were dead," said Mark Muldoon of the state attorney general's office. "He put stuff in there like 'functioning at an optimal level,' and the guy had been dead for months.
"In another case, he described 'a shy and retiring gentlemen.' Well, the guy was shy and retiring because he was 6 feet under. And in another note, he wrote, 'she seems more at peace now.' Well I guess death will do that for you," Muldoon told a Boston newspaper.
Muldoon said Dongarra also billed the state for 36-hour work days.
He was convicted in Suffolk Superior Court and sentenced to five years probation. The state also revoked his license to practice psychology.
Dongarra, 51, is being held at the Plymouth House of Correction pending extradition to Arizona, where he was found guilty in absentia of stealing $90,000 worth of religious artifacts from several churches while posing as a priest.
He faces between three and 12½ years in prison on various charges.
Dongarra fled Arizona on Nov. 6, 1996, the same day he agreed to a plea bargain that would have resulted in four to five years in prison. Authorities there said he amassed more than $1 million from insurance fraud and theft.
He moved to the Glastonbury Abbey in Hingham in April as a candidate for the Benedictine order. The abbey's monks were stunned when FBI agents showed up Thursday morning to arrest Dongarra.
Muldoon, who prosecuted Dongarra in 1983 for the Medicaid fraud, said he remembers him as a bright man who blatantly defrauded the state with 1,500 phony insurance claims.
He said Dongarra supervised psychologists from Coastal Counseling in Hingham who had been assigned to four area nursing homes.
Muldoon said Dongarra's fraud caused the state Medicaid system to reprogram its computers to prevent billing for deceased clients.
"What he did was so blatant, just unbelievably blatant," said Muldoon. "This was one of the worst cases we've ever seen."
The FBI's trail to Glastonbury Abbey began when a Pennsylvania clergyman vacationing in Florida watched Dongarra's case recently on the television program "America's Most Wanted" and recognized him as a onetime applicant to his order. .. --> ===== Place Photo caption ** above ** this Line ===== -->.. --> ===== Start of navigation table ===== -->

So I wasn't the only one duped by him. There's more to the story but I don't think it's ever been told.

Thanks for reading.


Carol Hiller said...

Sweet Jesus. Once again, I ponder how a huge multinational organization like the Catholic Church stays in business all these centuries with such incredibly lax human resource practices?

Tammy Allen said...

totally! The rest of the story is he was excommunicated from the church. He never attended Harvard. He left a trail of emotional and sexual abuse that is classified (?) He was engaged to be married at the time he molested me. He would buy black lab puppies to lure women and girls to him and abandon them when they grew up. They were all named Molly.

Anonymous said...

Hummmm! Seem I remember that when he was at St. Judes he had a black lab. He was a piece of work and I always had bad feeling about him. He liked to use a lot or psyco-babble! He had Bsp Wilkes and many others really snowed.

Fr. Dave Haynes

Anonymous said...

I knew "Mike" as "Father Mike" in the couple of years before he was arrested. He was greatly admired and liked by patients, staff, and people who knew him for his religious services. An incredibly skilled con man. I only tonight read that he was a child abuser. It sickens me. He is now no longer in prison as far as I can determine.

Anonymous said...

I am Glad i discovered this web site.Added to my bookmark!

Anonymous said...

I knew him as a kid and through his HS years. He seemed fine then. He did attend St. Joseph's Seminary in Yonkers NY, but was never ordained. He left there and went to Mass. somewhere, aledgedly to contnue his studies within an order of priests. Lost contact with him and saw him once since then, in 1973. The last I had heard he was still in Federal Prison in Arizona.

Anonymous said...

You can combine in &frac12 of a cuρ of salt anԁ &frac12 of a cuρ of baking sοdа and рour them in
the dгain. Fοr the гeаson that Cass Ѕunstеіn
boasted about an “unprecеdentеԁly formidablе governing administration-large rеview” of regulation that sаved only $two billiοn for every сalendaг уear,
or . Tea makеrѕ, toаsters and ovens are some of the other cruсial κіtchen arеa equipments.

Also visit my websіte -
My blog ; More Support

Anonymous said...

tramadol online tramadol 600mg a day - can you order tramadol online