- Why the Explosive Report on Catholic Church Abuse Is Unlikely to Yield Criminal Charges
- Tear down the protections for pedophile priests
- The Credibility of Ritual Abuse Allegations
- Changes in Awareness of Severe Abuse and Child Abuse Crimes Over Twenty Five Years
- Child and Ritual Abuse Conference Helps Educate Survivors and Their Helpers
Why the Explosive Report on Catholic Church Abuse Is Unlikely to Yield Criminal Charges
By Dan Levin Aug. 15, 2018
By Dan Levin Aug. 15, 2018
The searing grand jury report issued Tuesday in Pennsylvania that accuses bishops and other Roman Catholic Church leaders in that state of covering up child sexual abuse by more than 300 priests has prompted growing calls for justice, while leaving Americans wondering about the broader impact of the revelations on the church and other institutions.
But a web of legal barriers stands in the way of prosecuting most of the cases, and efforts to ease those barriers have repeatedly run into political opposition and fierce lobbying by the church and other groups. Pennsylvania lags behind many other states in coming to grips with the problem, despite a series of grand jury investigations stretching back 15 years....
The nearly 900-page grand jury report is unlikely to lead to any new criminal charges or civil lawsuits over the abuse that it catalogs, because the statute of limitations has expired on those cases. Current state law allows victims of abuse as children 12 years to sue after they come of age at 18, meaning they must do so by age 30. Criminal complaints must be filed by the time the victim is 50. Those rules leave the vast majority of abuse survivors, who came forward later in life — the grand jury said they include people as old as 83 — with no legal recourse. Only two of the cases in the report have so far led to criminal charges....
Tear down the protections for pedophile priests
By Editorial Board August 20
IN AN extraordinary communique to the world’s 1.2 billion Catholics, Pope Francis on Monday acknowledged the “atrocities” committed by pedophile priests and the church hierarchy that systematically covered up their crimes, recognized the inadequacy of efforts “to beg pardon” and admitted that the victims’ “wounds never go away.” In so doing, the pontiff provided a powerful rationale for dropping the church’s long-standing opposition to allowing decades-old cases of rape and molestation by priests to be subject to prosecution and lawsuits.
At last, after years of half-measures and tone-deaf remarks, the pope seems to have woken up to the scale of abuse and corruption sanctioned by the church. The question now is whether he is willing or able to turn the tide of institutional resistance in the Vatican and dioceses worldwide that too often has blocked victims from seeking justice and recompense....
Many states have extended or dropped limits on the number of years within which prosecutors are able to charge child sexual abuse felonies. In other states, including Maryland, New York and Pennsylvania, efforts to extend criminal statutes of limitations have failed. And the church has spent millions of dollars fighting changes in statutes of limitations to give victims, who often cannot speak for decades about the abuse they suffered as children, more time to bring civil lawsuits.
The Credibility of Ritual Abuse Allegations
Presenter: Randy Noblitt, PhD
Changes in Awareness of Severe Abuse and Child Abuse Crimes Over Twenty Five Years Presenter: Neil Brick
Child and Ritual Abuse Conference Helps Educate Survivors and Their Helpers; Speakers included Dr. Randy Noblitt and Neil Brick