The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests
SNAP Press Statement
For immediate release: Friday, April 30, 2010
Clergy sex abuse victims blast judge's ruling
Statement by David Clohessy, Executive Director of SNAP, Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314-566-9790)
We're stunned that a judge considers only those kids who immediately reported their horrific child sexual abuse worthy to testify in court. This essentially rules out about 95% of all those who were molested.
It's exceedingly rare to see a six year old girl walking into the police station to disclose that her stepdad is raping her or a nine year old boy emailing the prosecutor to report that his teacher is sodomizing him. On the other hand, the vast majority of child sex abuse victims are unable to promptly stand up to a shrewd predator and speak out about their suffering.
In our 22 years of helping child sex victims in all kinds of institutional settings, this is one of the most disturbing court rulings we’ve ever seen.
(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 22 years and have more than 9,000 members across the globe. 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)
Contacts: David Clohessy (314 566 9790 cell, 314 645 5915 home), Barbara Blaine (312-399-4747), Mark Serrano (703-727-4940), Peter Isely (414-429-7259), Barbara Dorris (314 503 0003)
April 30, 2010
Boys ranch trial delayed one week
Kevin Graman The Spokesman-Review
A Spokane County Superior Court judge agreed on Thursday to delay trial of the second child sex abuse lawsuit against Morning Star Boys’ Ranch for one week while the state Court of Appeals for Division III decides whether to review her decision to limit the testimony of former residents who claim to have been abused.
Jury selection in the case of George H. Minehart II will begin May 10 unless the higher court takes up the issue of whether Judge Kathleen O’Connor was correct in ruling that only those former residents who say they reported their alleged abuse at the time it occurred may testify. The trial had been scheduled to begin Monday.
Attorneys for the plaintiff believe residents’ testimony could support allegations that Morning Star administrators knew or should have known of sexual abuse at the home for troubled boys and did nothing to stop it.
The Appeals Court ruling could have a significant impact on not only Minehart’s trial, but 16 Morning Star lawsuits waiting to be tried in O’Connor’s court.
Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests