Police in Mobile, Alabama, are investigating a defrocked priest over claims that he had been “grooming” a recent high school grad before the pair shipped out to Italy.
Former priest Alex Crow, 30, is on the run with a 18-year-old graduate of McGill-Toolen Catholic High School, where he spoke in theology classes and heard confessions, according to local reports.
Although police initially didn’t suspect any romance between the pair, they soon discovered that the teen had received a love letter from the unholy man on Valentine’s Day, while she was still a student.
“I believe there was some grooming that’s gone on, and you’ve got a much older adult interacting with teenage girls in an inappropriate way,” Sheriff Paul Burch told NBC 15. He also suggested that more female students may have been involved with Crow.
Crow, who was ordained in 2021, had been assigned to the Corpus Christi Parish, but was removed from the clergy by the Archdiocese of Mobile last month after he abandoned his post and ran off to Europe with the teen.
“His behavior is totally unbecoming of a priest,” Archbishop Thomas Rodi said in a statement last month. “He has been informed by the archbishop that he may no longer exercise ministry as a priest, nor to tell people he is a priest, nor to dress as a priest.”
Burch noted that Crow, who was once in a rock band, had a fascination with demonology, and told people that he was going to Europe with the teen to perform exorcisms.
On a 2022 podcast, Crow shared that a priest performed a “minor exorcism” on him several years ago, which ultimately cured him of bizarre health issues like migraines and chest pains, AL.com reported.
The sheriff told Fox10 that Crow and the teen have no plans to return to Mobile, despite the girl’s parent flying to Italy and begging their daughter to come home.