For immediate release Friday, January 31, 2014
Statement by Judy Jones of St. Louis, Assistant Midwest Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 974 5003, firstname.lastname@example.org)
By their own admission, St. Louis archdiocesan officials admit that only 8% of the child sex abuse reports they received about priests were turned over to police or Division of Family Services.
These reports span the years from 1993-2003, a time when even high school drop outs knew that suspected crimes, especially heinous crimes against kids, should be reported to law enforcement
It's also very telling that in 35 cases, relatives or loved ones of victims reported abuse. Yet church officials apparently did little or no outreach, ostensibly because the victim himself or herself didn't take the initiative. Had a third party reported a pastor stealing money, we seriously doubt that Catholic officials would have taken such a passive approach.
Finally, keep in mind that Archbishop Robert Carlson was forced to make even this vague and misleading disclosure, because a brave victim of Fr. Joseph D. Ross is seeking justice and endured years of hard-ball and stalling legal strategies by Catholic officials. If not for her courage and persistence, none of this information would ever have been made public. We are grateful to her and to every victim, witness and whistleblower who has helped peel back decades of secrecy by callous, reckless and deceitful church employees, at the top and the bottom of the Catholic hierarchy.