TX- Catholic records sought by victims' lawyer; SNAP responds
For immediate release: Monday, April 14, 2014
Statement by David Clohessy of St. Louis, Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 566 9790, SNAPclohessy@aol.com)
A lawyer representing clergy sex abuse victims has filed a motion seeking records from the Catholic Diocese of Corpus Christi because of the crimes of Fr. Clement Hageman.
We hope Corpus Christi Bishop Michael Mulvey will respond promptly and fully. Catholic officials should be voluntarily turning over and making public records about child molesting clerics, instead of waiting for subpoenas and court orders.
According to a New Mexico newspaper, Hageman “is accused in lawsuits of sexually assaulting at least six boys in the Gallup diocese” and “had earlier worked in the Diocese of Corpus Christi, where sexual abuse allegations were made against him, according to personnel records made public in other cases.
We hope that every single person who saw, suspected or suffered Fr. Hageman's crimes will call police, expose wrongdoers and deter cover-ups. Those who commit and conceal heinous clergy sex crimes – whether living or dead, whether priest or bishop – should be exposed and, if possible, punished so that kids will be safer and crimes will be deterred.
(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 15,000 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.
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.