LA- Louisiana authorities prodded on old rape allegations
For immediate release: Thursday, April 3
We urge Louisiana law enforcement officials to move very quickly to investigate and charge Mack Ford for the horrific crimes reported by Jennifer Halter and others at the New Bethany Home for Girls in Arcadia. We are deeply moved by the suffering and the courage of these brave women. Their concern for others and their own deep pain should prompt speedy and thorough action by police and prosecutors.
Quick movement by authorities would likely encourage other sex crime victims to step forward. That, in turn, would almost certainly prevent more sex crimes.
In recent years, police and prosecutors have become more aggressive, creative and successful at pursuing even very old crimes. We beg state authorities to use whatever resources are needed to make justice happen here.
But too often, police and prosecutors let elderly child molesters off easy. We hope that doesn't happen here. We believe it's very likely that Ford is still molesting kids. Age often doesn't slow a child predator. If anything, it makes them more dangerous, for at least two reasons. First, because they become more shrewd at picking victims who can't or won't tell or be believed and who come from families that are less apt or willing to report to police. And second, because they also seem more trustworthy as they age, with stooped shoulders, slow gaits, thick glasses and thinning hair.
If the US Justice Department can win convictions of 70 and 80 year old racists who assaulted and intimidated African Americans activists in the 1950s, surely Louisiana authorities can pursue Ford with vigor.
(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)