Catholic priest violates the terms of his 'pre-trial' release and arrested again
(For Immediate Release July 18, 2022)
Fr. James Jackson, FSSP, A Rhode Island priest who had recently transferred from Colorado has been arrested for allegedly violating the conditions of his release while in Kansas.
Jackson was originally charged in October of last year with possessing and transferring child pornography. A Rhode Island State Police task force, Internet Crimes Against Children, executed a search warrant at St. Mary’s on Broadway, in Providence. Both the church and rectory were included in the warrant. State Police said that as part of a child pornography investigation, they discovered that the internet connection at the rectory at the parish was involved.
We are not shocked to learn of Jackson’s arrest. In fact, we wonder why anyone would think releasing him to a different state while he awaits trial was ever a good idea in the first place. It certainly doesn’t seem safe for any residential community to allow a defendant facing child pornography offenses to live, especially given the type of media collected during a warrant in his case in Rhode Island.
Under the terms of his release from federal court in November, Jackson was allowed to return to his home state of Kansas to live with a relative while waiting for the charges to be adjudicated. Jim Martin, a spokesman for the U.S. District Court of Rhode Island, said that Jackson was arrested for allegedly violating the terms of his “pre-trial” release.
We suspect the terms of release must have included no access to electronic devices that would give access with intent to view sexual exploitation of children, including possessing or distributing this graphic material. And while the exact terms of the violation have yet to be disclosed, we can’t help but think about the danger and reality of the alleged crimes Jackson faces. Child molesters and pornographers are not just criminals, they are sick and impulsive, it is in their pores.
We hope he has not notched any more victims; we ask Kansas and Rhode Island authorities to scour his travels and access to devices. Federal authorities need to keep this dangerous man behind bars until his prosecution and those charged with his supervision should never believe that Jackson has repented to sin no more. You can take the actor away from the scene of crimes, but as we have seen many times over in cases involving delict priests, they’ll never stop because of a new address.
CONTACT: Mike McDonnell, SNAP Communications Manager, (267-261-0578, [email protected]) Zach Hiner, SNAP Executive Director (517-974-9009, [email protected]) Shaun Dougherty, SNAP Board President, (814-341-8386, [email protected])
(SNAP, the Survivors Network, has been providing support for victims of sexual abuse in institutional settings for 30 years. We have more than 25,000 survivors and supporters in our network. Our website is SNAPnetwork.org)