MN- Predatory priest case to be heard by MN Supreme Court
For immediate release: Friday, June 27, 2014
Statement by David Clohessy of St. Louis, Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314-566-9790 cell, SNAPclohessy@aol.com)
We are thrilled that Minnesota's highest court will take another look at the criminal abuse case against Fr. Christopher Wenthe of the St. Paul Archdiocese.
It's worth noting that the issue here is a legal technicality. There's little or no doubt that he abused his power and broke the law by sexually exploiting a parishioner. (Whether the constitutionality of that law is ultimately is upheld is the unresolved question.)
It's also worth noting that there's still time for others who may have seen, suspected or suffered Fr. Wenthe's crimes to step forward. By doing so, they can help prosecutors, themselves, and others.
(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 20,000 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.