Wednesday, March 02, 2016

Pennsylvania Grand Jury Exposes Extensive Sex Abuse By Catholic Diocese Clergy

Yesterday Pennsylvania Attorney General Kathleen Kane released a 147-page Grand Jury report (full text) on sexual abuse of children by Pennsylvania Catholic clergy.  As summarized in the Attorney General's press release:
A statewide investigating grand jury has determined that hundreds of children were sexually abused over a period of at least 40 years by priests or religious leaders assigned to the Roman Catholic Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown, Pennsylvania....
The widespread abuse involved at least 50 priests or religious leaders. Evidence and testimony reviewed by the grand jury also revealed a troubling history of superiors within the Diocese taking action to conceal the child abuse as part of an effort to protect the institution's image.
The Grand Jury concluded its report with 3 recommendations: (1) abolish the statute of limitations for sexual offenses against minors; (2) open a window to allow child sexual abuse victims to have their civil actions heard; and (3) possible criminal conduct should be directly reported to law enforcement authorities. Washington Post has more on the grand jury report.