LOS ANGELES – A Roman Catholic priest was ousted as president of a boys parochial school after allegations surfaced that he molested boys in the 1970s.
The Rev. Dominic Savino, 63, was fired Friday as president of Crespi Carmelite High School in Encino and barred from acting as a priest by the Order of Carmelites, the religious order that operates the school.
"Father Dominic has cooperated with our investigation and acknowledged there were some incidents that took place and he did seek psychotherapy and counseling," said the Rev. Joe Fitzgerald, alumni relations director.
School officials said they reported Savino to the Police Department's Sexually Exploited Child Unit.
Savino, 63, had been president of the school since January 2001.
The alleged abuse came to light earlier this month when a woman reported to the Los Angeles Archdiocese's new sex abuse hot line that her twin sons were abused by Savino in 1979 during a field trip that was not sponsored by the school.
The archdiocese has no authority over the school but notified the Carmelites, which conducted an internal investigation that revealed other molestation allegations in the 1970s. Under a policy established by the order in 1982, Savino was removed from active ministry, offered counseling and is under 24-hour watch by another priest, Fitzgerald said.
Crespi's 492 students were notified during an assembly Friday.
"He was a really warm guy. Just a really nice man," said Matt Gottsman, 15.
Savino previously worked at De Sales High School in Louisville, Ky., and served as director of the Carmelite community in Rome.
He arrived at Crespi in 1977 as a part-time counselor, left in 1986 to get a doctorate in psychology, then went into private practice before returning to Crespi in 1995.