Notre Dame Professor Accused of Abuse Commits Suicide

March 17, 2016

An endowed professor of theology at the University of Notre Dame who was accused of sexually abusing a boy in the 1980s killed himself Monday, the South Bend Tribune reported. The Reverend Virgilio Elizondo, 80, died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound after repeatedly denying claims by an unnamed man that he had abused him. In a lawsuit, the accuser says he was the victim of frequent abuse at the hands of another priest in a San Antonio orphanage and sought counsel in Father Elizondo, who allegedly abused him as well. Father Elizondo taught at Notre Dame from 2000-2015, according to information from the university. A university spokesperson reportedly responded to the Tribune’s request for comment with a link to a memoriam web page that says, in part, “Extolled as a founder of U.S. Latino religious thought, Father Elizondo was hailed in Time magazine as one of the leading spiritual innovators” in the country.

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