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Two claim dentist slain in Amherst had long history of molesting teens

Two Buffalo men in their late 40s have come forward to claim that a dentist slain in his Amherst home two weeks ago sought them out for sexual encounters when they were teenagers -- three decades ago.

Gregory C. Miller claims he was molested by Dr. Joseph D. Matteliano about 20 times inside a Black Rock house that the dentist dubbed the "chicken ranch," where he threw parties and supplied wine and mescaline in 1973 and 1974.

Gordon Greiner says he was lured from Delaware Park with a marijuana joint, then given a boat ride and taken back to Matteliano's home. There they got high on laughing gas before he turned aside the older man's sexual advances in 1976, Greiner said.

Matteliano, 64, was stabbed to death Feb. 2. His accused killer, 17-year-old Patrick Farrell of Black Rock, claims Matteliano also sought him out for sexual encounters.

Both men came forward and agreed to use their names after learning what Farrell told Amherst police.

Farrell, in his statement that has become part of his court record, claimed Matteliano drove him to his home four times, got him high on laughing gas each time and sexually abused him twice, before the youth stabbed the dentist.

At his court appearance Thursday, Farrell waived lower-court proceedings and was ordered held without bail by Amherst Town Justice Geoffrey K. Klein, pending grand jury action in the case.

Since The Buffalo News published details of Farrell's statement Wednesday, the two Buffalo men are among several people who have contacted The News and authorities about Matteliano's reported relationships with young men over the years.

Miller, now 49, says he was 15, a sophomore at McKinley High School, when he met Matteliano at a party. Five nights a week for a year and a half, Miller said, he and other teens partied at a friend's Bridgeman Street home, in Black Rock, while the friend's mother worked a second-shift job.

Wine, mescaline and laughing gas were the magnets for the parties, which attracted a few dozen teens, he said. "It was just a continuous flow of kids coming and going," Miller claimed inside his West Side apartment Thursday. "Joe would take kids up into the bedroom and molest them."

Miller, a University at Buffalo graduate and former auditor and Peace Corps volunteer, explained the older man's success in luring youths to the parties. "We were naive and impressionable," he said. "Joe was very charismatic and manipulative. He was looking for the needy kid."

Miller turned out to be the perfect candidate. "I just wanted some kind of emotional bond, because I came from a dysfunctional family," he said. "I was looking for someone to show me some emotion or comfort."

Greiner, 47, who lives on Buffalo's East Side, had a much shorter friendship with Matteliano.

But when he learned two weeks ago that Matteliano had been killed, he immediately told his wife about the incident from 1976, when he was only 17. He was playing Frisbee in Delaware Park when a man came up to him and offered him a joint. That led to a ride on Matteliano's boat before they went back to the man's residence, he said.

"We did some laughing gas with the masks, and then he started to reach over to play with me," Greiner said. "I kept telling him no, and he stopped. He wasn't a real aggressive guy, but he was a predator."

Greiner was struck by the apparent similarity in Matteliano's approach, including the laughing gas, from so many years ago.

If that has been going on for 30 years, Greiner wondered how many young people Matteliano might have molested.

Both men were asked why they never reported Matteliano to authorities.

"Back then, it was a different mind-set," Greiner said. "I just blew it off. You weren't taught that you were supposed to call police [to report such behavior]."

Miller had a different reason. "I was afraid of being depicted as a homosexual," he said. "If I would have been mature enough, I would have told [my friend's] mother."

Miller said he wants to tell his story, both to help others caught in the same situation and for his own benefit. "If anyone else is a victim in similar circumstances, they should know there is a support system out there," he said. "I want to help any other victims."

Both men were asked their reaction to Matteliano's death.

"I don't think he deserved to die like that, but I still think he was a sexual predator," Greiner said. "I don't know how he got away with it for that many years."

Miller said he's become a strong Christian, but he can't forgive his abuser. "Even after his murder, I still have nightmares about him," he said. "I don't think he has a soul or conscience."

News Staff Reporter Matt Gryta contributed to this report.

-mail: gwarner@buffnews.com

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