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The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests

SNAP Press Release

Sex abuse victims want action on two predators

They beg two bishops to “come clean about your predecessor”

And they want KC diocese to warn about pedophile-priest-turned-lawyer

Church officials stay silent about both predators’ status, guilt and whereabouts

Yet KC diocese paid money to six men who report being molested by ex-KC bishop

Finn can’t just “pay victims, walk away, and let predators go elsewhere,” support group says

WHAT
Holding signs and childhood photos at a sidewalk news conference, clergy sex abuse victims will try to hand deliver a letter urging Kansas City MO Catholic officials to
-- warn the public about a predator priest who is now a lawyer working with kids, and
-- “come clean” about a former Kansas City bishop who molested six men and sent their personnel files about the alleged pedophile to Wyoming’s new bishop

They will also
-- urge Catholic officials – here and elsewhere - to warn families about the two,
-- prod three current bishops to seek out anyone who saw, suspected or suffered crimes by the two, and
-- urge anyone with information about their wrongdoing to call the police.

WHEN
TODAY, Tuesday, Feb. 16, 1:30 p.m.

WHERE
Outside the headquarters of the Kansas City Catholic diocese, 300 East 36th in Kansas City

WHY
Last month, SNAP learned that a former Kansas City priest has become a lawyer in Colorado. Also last month, a new Catholic bishop took over in Wyoming, where a different former Kansas City priest now lives. Both ex-Kansas City clerics are credibly accused child predators. (One has faced six accusers who have all been paid settlements.)

In the 1990s, according to the Kansas City Star, Fr. Michael E. Brewer was sent to “an unnamed treatment center, after several families at a Kansas City parish accused him of improperly touching their boys.” Two years earlier, Brewer was “accused of caressing a boy's buttocks.” But a top Kansas City diocesan official, Fr. Norman Rotert (816 550 4357 cell), admitted that "we would have been better off to have sent him to a national center for evaluation" sooner. (http://hem.passagen.se/kristnabrott/over2.htm)

Now, two concerned Catholics have alerted SNAP to the fact that Brewer now directs a Boulder CO-based non-profit that helps “disadvantaged youth.” (Brett Family Foundation, 1123 Spruce Street, 303 367 5475, 303 442 1200).

In the 1990s, Brewer was sued by a Kansas City man (Michael Gibson) and his parents (Narron and Marianne Gibson) for allegedly sexually abusing Michael when he was a teenager in 1990. The suit charged that after “watching movies in the rectory, and in the early morning hours while Michael slept, Brewer touched and fondled (him) in a sexual, offensive and unwelcome manner." Brewer has maintained his innocence.

In 1997, the Missouri Supreme Court tossed out the lawsuit because of the statute of limitations. Then-Jackson County MO prosecutor, Claire McCaskill, criticized the diocese for refusing to provide names of parishioners who had accused Brewer.

SNAP is urging Kansas City and Denver Catholic officials to “warn unsuspecting families about him and reach out to anyone who may have seen, suspected or suffered any crimes or misdeeds” by Brewer.

SNAP is also worried that now-retired Wyoming Bishop Joseph H. Hart walks free despite the fact that Kansas City church officials have settled lawsuits with at least six men who say Hart abused them as kids. SNAP wants current Kansas City Bishop Robert Finn to give Wyoming’s new bishop all of Hart’s personnel files and warn his flock about Hart. The group believes it’s irresponsible for Finn to pay Hart’s victims yet keep silent while unsuspecting Catholic families, perhaps both in Kansas City and Wyoming, give Hart access to their children.

Brewer apparently lived in Silver Spring MD, the home of the Catholic church’s primary treatment facility for predator priests. Brewer is around 50 years old, is now a lawyer, and reportedly still has family in the Kansas City area.

Brewer’s alleged crimes happened at St. Elizabeth parish in Kansas City, where Kansas City’s most notorious predator priests (Msgrs. Thomas O'Brien & Thomas Reardon) also worked. Brewer also worked in Blue Springs MO.

Attorneys: James R. Wyrsch (816-221-0080) and Michael P. Joyce (816-421-0644) represented Brewer. Sylvester James, Jr. (816-472-6800), Nancy E. Kenner (816-931-1400) and Brian C. Fries (816-460-5326) represented the Gibsons. James P. Tierney (816-460-5835), William J. Stapleton and Brian J. Madden (816-701-1100) represented Brewer’s employer, the Kansas City MO diocese (816-756 2685).

http://mo.findacase.com/research/wfrmDocViewer.aspx/xq/fac.%5Cmo%5CPLS%5C1996%5C19960305_0002.mo.htm/qx

http://www.bishop-accountability.org/news3/1997_08_20_Lambe_DecisionRestricts_Thomas_Ward_4.htm

CONTACT
Barbara Dorris 314 503 0003, David Clohessy 314 566 9790


Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests
www.snapnetwork.org
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