For Immediate Release
Tuesday, January 5, 2016
STATEMENT REGARDING ALLEGATION AGAINST HIGH SCHOOL TEACHER-COACH
The Archdiocese of Baltimore has received an allegation involving Ms. Catherine Czapski, 24, who has served as soccer and track/cross-country coach and substitute teacher at Bishop Walsh School, a K-12 Catholic school in Cumberland, Maryland. Catherine Czapski is alleged to have engaged in sexual activity with a minor female student at the school.
The allegation was brought to the attention of the Archdiocese through an anonymous phone call to its Office of Child & Youth Protection. The Archdiocese was able to determine the source of the call and reported the matter to the Allegany County State’s Attorney’s Office and to the Department and Child Protective Services of the Department of Social Services. Today, civil authorities in Allegany County charged Catherine Czapski with five counts of fourth degree sex offense by a person in position of authority.
Catherine Czapski was informed Monday that she was prohibited from working or volunteering at any parish or school in the Archdiocese of Baltimore. Catherine Czapski served as a soccer coach at Bishop Walsh from 2013-15 and as a substitute teacher and track and cross-country coach from 2014-15.
Families of current students and recent school graduates are being informed about this matter. The Archdiocese and the school are encouraging anyone with information about this or any other possible incident of abuse to report it to civil authorities and to the Archdiocese and/or Bishop Walsh. The Archdiocese and the school have offered counseling assistance and pastoral care to the student and to others who may have been affected.
The Archdiocese of Baltimore and Bishop Walsh High School are unaware of any other allegation that Catherine Czapski engaged in sexual activity with a minor.
The Archdiocese of Baltimore and Bishop Walsh High School are committed to protecting children and helping to heal victims of abuse. We urge anyone who has any knowledge of child abuse to come forward, and to report it immediately to civil authorities. The number for the Allegany County Department of Social Services is (301) 784- 7000. Allegany County Police can be reached at 911. If the abuse was committed by a member of the clergy or other church personnel including teachers or volunteers, we ask that you also call the Archdiocesan Office of the Child and Youth Protection at 1-866-417-7469.