IL- Victims want maximum punishment for Hastert
Group seeks “the most severe penalties possible”
SNAP: “Feds should give more details in indictment”
Group also urges Congressional incentives to reform statute of limitations
Before Dennis Hastert’s arraignment, holding signs and childhood photos, abuse victims and supporters will urge federal prosecutors to:
--seek the most severe penalties possible for Hastert,
--issue a more detailed indictment of Hastert, and
--use their “bully pulpit” to prod others who may have seen, suspected or suffered Hastert’s crimes to come forward now so the ex-congressman might face more criminal charges.
The victims will also urge
--lawmakers in Congress to back a bill that would incentivize states to reform their statute of limitations for child sex victims, and
--lawmakers in Springfield to back a bill that would create a three year civil “window” to enable anyone who was sexually assaulted as a child by anyone to file a suit and expose those who commit or conceal child sex crimes.
Tuesday, June 9 at 1:00 p.m.
Outside the Everett McKinley Dirksen United States Courthouse (219 South Dearborn Street Chicago, IL 60604, between Adams St and Jackson Blvd).
Three-four members of a support group for clergy sex abuse victims called SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests
1) Late last month, Senator Harry Reid (D-NV) announced an innovative measure that would better protect kids and potentially prevent more scandals like the Hastert one. The bill would give state lawmakers incentives to reform restrictive statutes of limitations that prevent most child sex abuse victims from exposing child molesters in court. SNAP vigorously backs this effort.
“It’s unfair and illogical to have a bizarre patchwork of conflicting state child safety laws,” said SNAP Founder and President Barbara Blaine. “Sometimes, 40 victims of a predator in one state are frozen out of the justice system but one victim of the same predator who was taken a few miles further, across a state line, can seek justice. That’s wrong and reckless.”
2) Prosecutors should seek the maximum penalty against Hastert, SNAP says, to deter child sex crimes and cover ups in the future.
3) SNAP is also pushing prosecutors to disclose more details about Hastert’s wrongdoing. BuzzFeed reports that U.S. Attorney Zachary T. Fardon “agreed to withhold details” of Hastert’s indictment and had considered being “much more explicit (but) ultimately agreed to limit the amount of information in the indictment in part because of a request from Hastert’s attorneys.”
SNAP believes that protecting the privacy of Hastert’s victims is crucial. But at the same time, more details about Hastert’s wrongdoing “may deter others from committing or concealing child sex crimes,” SNAP says. The group also questions the value of making concessions around secrecy to a credibly accused child molester.
4) SNAP is also praising Wheaton College officials for removing Hastert’s name from a building, wrestling officials who are re-naming a tournament and Illinois House's members’ decision to shelve a $500,000 proposal to erect a statue honoring Hastert.
A copy of the indictment is here:
Barbara Blaine (312-399-4747 cell, 312 455 1499 office, bblaine@SNAPnetwork.org); David Clohessy (314-566-9790 cell, email@example.com); Barbara Dorris (314-503-0003 cell, SNAPdorris@gmail.com); Kate Bochte (630-768-1860, firstname.lastname@example.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.
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.