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SNAP
Statement



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The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests

SNAP Press Statement

For immediate release: Friday, January 15, 2010

MA high court denies ex-priest's bid for new trial based on challenge to repressed memories; abuse victims respond

Statement by Barbara Blaine of Chicago, national president of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (312-399-4747)

Kids are safer with Shanley behind bars. We hope this news will bring some comfort to the dozens he has victimized, many of whom are no doubt still struggling with the devastating, life-long effects of sexual abuse.

The court is right: repressed memories are well documented and widely accepted in the scientific and therapeutic community, despite a small but loud handful of nay-sayers.

Let's hope this ruling will encourage others who were hurt by sex offenders to come forward, get help, expose predators, protect others and start healing.

(SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, is the nation’s oldest and largest support group for clergy abuse victims. We’ve been around for 21 years and have more than 9,000 members across the country. 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)

Contact David Clohessy (314-566-9790 cell, 314-645-5915 home), Barbara Blaine (312-399-4747), Peter Isely (414-429-7259)


Mass. high court denies ex-priest's bid for new trial based on challenge to repressed memories
DENISE LAVOIE AP Legal Affairs Writer
10:35 AM EST, January 15, 2010

BOSTON (AP) — The highest court in Massachusetts has denied a request for a new trial by a former Roman Catholic priest who was a key figure in the Boston clergy sex abuse scandal.

Paul Shanley claims he was wrongly convicted based in part on a victim's repressed memories. His lawyer calls the theory of repressed memory "junk science."

The Supreme Judicial Court said Friday that while the repressed memory theory is controversial, it's generally accepted in the scientific community.

A man claims Shanley raped him repeatedly when he was a child attending catechism classes in Newton. He says he repressed memories of the abuse for two decades until media coverage of the scandal in 2002.

Shanley is serving a 12- to 15-year sentence for child rape and indecent assault and battery.


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


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