FL--Victims respond to alleged arson in Tampa

For immediate release: Wednesday, Nov. 30, 2016

Statement by David Clohessy of St. Louis, Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 566 9790, 314 645 5915 home, [email protected]

Shame on both the person who allegedly torched a Tampa area home and on Matthew Smith who reportedly often “posts memes mocking sex assault accusations” against Donald Trump, Bill Cosby and convicted Stanford rapist Brock Turner.


Arson is wrong. But so is mocking known or possible victims of devastating sexual assaults. 

We deplore violence. But we also deplore those who deliberately

--rub salt into already deep and still fresh wounds of victims of sexual violence

--essentially help predators assault more victims by deterring victims from reporting crimes

--make the work of police and prosecutors tougher, by also deterring victims from reporting crimes. 

We hope this alleged vandalism will cause Smith - and others like him – to stop using social media to hurt the already hurting and endanger more innocent kids and vulnerable adults.

Here is the proper way for people to act when rape or child sex abuse reports are made public: 


We feel sorry for Smith and his family. But it’s not easy to summon sympathy for those who, from the comfort, safety and privacy of their homes or work, use the Internet to harass victims of heinous crimes.

No matter what happens in this case, we urge every single person who saw, suspected or suffered sex crimes and cover ups to protect others by calling police, get help by calling therapists, expose wrongdoers by calling law enforcement, get justice by calling attorneys, and be comforted by calling support groups like ours. This is how all will be safer, victims will recover, criminals will be prosecuted, cover ups will be deterred and the truth will surface.

(SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, is the world’s oldest and largest support group for clergy abuse victims. SNAP was founded in 1988 and has more than 20,000 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)

Contact - David Clohessy (314-566-9790 cell, [email protected]), Barbara Dorris (314-503-0003 cell, [email protected]), Barbara Blaine (312-399-4747[email protected])


Florida veteran seeks donations after home set on fire and tagged with anti-Trump slogans

TRAVIS GETTYS-30 NOV 2016                    

A Florida veteran is asking for help after his home was set on fire and t.

Matthew Smith, who served in the U.S. Navy, said he hasn’t displayed any signs or flags supporting Donald Trump outside his home, but he’s an outspoken supporter on Facebook of the Republican president-elect, gun militia groups and other conservative viewpoints, reported WTVT-TV.

He also frequently posts memes mocking sex assault accusations against Trump, Bill Cosby and convicted Stanford rapist Brock Turner.

Smith’s children were staying with their grandparents when  . . . 

Read full article here

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