Fr. William Harbert: Allegations of Sexual Abuse of a Minor Have Been Admitted, Established or Determined to Be Credible

Fr. William Harbert

Ordained: 1962

  • 1963-1966: Holy Trinity, Bloomington, IL (PEO)
  • 1967-1970: St. Joseph, Pekin, IL (PEO)
  • 1971: St. Thomas, Peoria Heights, IL (PEO)
  • 1972-1973: St. Joseph, Rock Island, IL (PEO)
  • 1974: St. Rose, Rushville, IL (PEO)
  • 1975-1976: Christ the King, Moline, IL (PEO)
  • 1977-1981: St. Mary, Keithsburg, IL (PEO)
  • 1982-1986: Immaculate Conception, Ohio, IL (PEO)
  • 1987-1988: St. John, Walnut, IL (PEO)
  • 1989-1992: Immaculate Conception, Ohio, IL (PEO)
  • 1990-1992: St. John, Walnut, IL (PEO)
  • 1993-2002: Unknown
  • 2003: Died

In 1993, at least five individuals accused Fr. William Harbert of sexually abusing them when they were children. The allegations dated back to the late 1960s to 1980s when Fr. Harbert worked at churches in Pekin, Rock Island, Moline, and Walnut. The Diocese of Peoria removed Fr. Harbert from public ministry in the wake of the allegations. Fr. Harbert was sent to the Isaac Ray Center in Chicago, which is associated with the Rush-Presbyterian-St. Luke’s Medical Center, an institution known for treating priests accused of child sexual abuse. The Diocese also sent Fr. Harbert to a psychotherapist for intensive therapy. Fr. Harbert was named in at least two child sexual abuse lawsuits. Fr. Harbert was included in the Diocese of Peoria’s list of “Priests Removed from Ministry Due to Allegations of Abuse of a Minor.” Fr. Harbert was believed to be residing in Galesburg as of 1993. His whereabouts, status as a priest, and whether he had access to children from 1993 until his death in 2003 are unknown.