CINCINNATI (FOX19) - A man who says he was a victim of Father Geoff Drew says wants others to speak out about what allegedly happened to them.
Drew is accused of raping an altar boy 30 years ago.
He pleaded not guilty to nine counts of rape during a bond hearing on Aug. 21.
Cincinnati police released a letter from the alleged victim on Thursday because he would like his words to be heard.
In the letter, the man says he wants to relay a message to other alleged victims that they are not alone and what happened was not their fault.
“Please know that it is okay for those around you to feel a righteous anger. Know that family will, and does, love you just the same. Know that you have a chance, an anonymous chance, to stand up and save others by your testimony. And in all this, you are loved and worthy.”
He goes on to say that he understands all of those feelings and he’s come to the realization that speaking out can provide others with a chance to not feel that same pain.
“Speaking up provides others the chance not to look in the mirror and wonder if they will be alright. Speaking up provides others the chance to live in a way that I, or you, did NOT get to.”
He goes on to say that speaking out solidifies the chance that this will never happen to someone again.
“I encourage you to do one of the hardest things possible and SPEAK OUT. Trust in knowing God has not abandoned you. This was not the act of a loving God. This was the act of an unloving man,” the letter said.
The man says just because Father Drew faces charges that carry a lot of jail time does not mean others should stay silent. He says the case becomes stronger when more people come forward.
He concludes by saying, “It is time to heal. It is time to save others. Coming forward was not easy, but I don’t regret it. In doing so it has helped to heal and free myself from the past.”
If convicted, Father Drew faces life in prison.