ME - Clergy abuse case v. Maine diocese loses; SNAP responds
For immediate release: Tuesday, Nov. 12, 2013
A clergy sex abuse victim has lost his bid to expose Maine Catholic officials who have ignored and concealed the heinous crimes of a predator priest.
Our hearts ache for William Picher. Despite his betrayal – first, by a predator priest and later, by that priest’s complicit colleagues – Picher is being denied a right guaranteed to most crime victims: his day in court.
He has done a heroic job of trying to shed light on clergy sex crimes and cover ups by Maine Catholic clerics. His courage and persistence are admirable.
Shame on Maine Catholic officials for exploiting legal technicalities to avoid responsibility for heinous child sex crimes committed and concealed by Maine Catholic clerics.
Our hearts also ache for Maine’s children. Hundreds of boys and girl are being sexually assaulted. Few of them can promptly disclose their suffering. Years from now, some of them will seek justice and try to expose the predators that hurt them in childhood. Today’s ruling will make it impossible or harder for most of these victims to take actions to protect others.
Because of archaic child safety laws, Maine has long been one of the most predator-friendly states. Today’s ruling perpetuates this dangerous injustice.
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.