DE- Judge should discuss controversial decision, victims say
For immediate release: Friday, April 4, 2014
Statement by David Clohessy of St. Louis, Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 566 9790, SNAPclohessy@aol.com)
It's disturbing that some have apparently threatened Delaware Judge Jan Jurden. But it's even more disturbing that a child predator, Robert Richards IV, is not in prison.
There's a reason we jail molesters: it's because that's the only sure way to stop them from severely hurting kids.
No one should threaten or perpetrate violence against any person, no matter what his or her occupation might be. But no child molester should be deemed guilty and be able to walk out of a courthouse and be able to molest a child that same day or week or month or year.
We urge Judge Jurden to publicly explain her controversial decision. That may help dissipate some of the anger that's directed at her. Or it may not. But doing so would at least be a tiny step forward toward accountability.
(SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, is the world’s oldest and largest support group for clergy abuse victims. We’ve been around for 25 years and have more than 15,000 members. Despite the word “priest” in our title, we have members who were molested by religious figures of all denominations, including nuns, rabbis, bishops, and Protestant ministers. Our website is SNAPnetwork.org)
50 State AG Call for Grand Jury
Any investigation must be:
- independent of and separate from the church
- must have subpoena powers and ability to compel testimony under oath
Anything short of these criteria is a sham and whitewash.
In addition, write letters to the editor, make phone calls to politicians as they can apply pressure to keep them responsive to our demand. We need to make efforts to ensure that they follow up on what the state is doing to investigate these crimes.
The Attorneys General of forty states have inquired about the grand jury process in Pennsylvania. Let's get statewide investigations going in fifty states.
Note to Letter Writers
Use your own words and style of writing. Cut and paste from the templates as you wish. Include your experiences, whether as a survivor or as a member of the community. And relate your letter to the state you were abused in or state now living in.