Catholic Social Services Knew of Employee's Former Conviction

By  | 

Fall 1988. That's when Nelson Graves, an employee at Catholic Social Services, revealed to his supervisor he had a criminal record for inappropriately touching a student. That's according to a Catholic Social Services memo.

According to the letter written by Sherri Solomon-Jozwiak - the current president of Catholic Social Services, Graves' 1984 conviction for criminal sexual conduct was revealed in 1988.

At that time, "His psychological counselor, his probation officer and his minister assured CSS/SVH [Catholic Social Services/St. Vincent Home] that he would not be a risk as an employee."

As a result, Graves' supervisor, who has since passed away, allowed Graves to continue working with Catholic Social Services in the Refugee Services department. He continued his work there until February 2002.

Solomon-Jozwiak joined Catholic Social Services as the president in 2000, and according to her letter, she learned of Graves' criminal sexual history in January 2002.

"Nelson Graves was immediately suspended from his duties, investigated and fired on Feb. 1, 2002 in compliance with the Sexual Misconduct Policy and Procedures of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Lansing," she wrote.

Michael Diebold, a Lansing Diocese spokesperson, says the group adopted a policy in November 2000 that prevents people with criminal sexual history from being employed in Catholic services.