MN- Investigation into Catholic professor should go on, SNAP says
For immediate release: Friday, May 30, 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)
A professor at a Catholic university – who may have helped a predator priest hide his crimes – has stepped down.
Don Briel's retirement changes nothing. St. Paul Archdiocese and University of St. Thomas officials should still finish their investigation into his alleged involvement in Fr. Michael Keating's crimes, disclose their results, and harshly denounce and punish Briel if he is found guilty of concealing or ignoring known or suspected child sexual abuse.
In October, Briel was asked by Minnesota Public Radio whether he knew about the allegation that Fr. Keating had molested at least one girl. He refused to answer. And yesterday, he again refused to answer questions about this very troubling case.
Those who endanger kids and protect predators should not be allowed to retire or walk away and evade responsibility for their callous and reckless actions. To stop this horrific crisis, wrongdoers must face tough penalties.
(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 18,000 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.