SNAP Responds to Release of Report by Maryland Attorney General Office
(For Immediate Release February 28, 2023)
We are incredibly appreciative that Baltimore Circuit Court Judge Robert Taylor Jr. has decided to allow the public to see a redacted copy of the Maryland Attorney General’s Office report on the history of child sexual abuse in the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Baltimore. While this is a victory for transparency, we hope that at some point in the future, the entire report will become available.
Judge Taylor ordered that the names of those who had not been previously identified publicly and who were accused of abusing children, covering up abuse, silencing victims, or otherwise helping to hide and enable abuse, were to be redacted from the public report. The judge said that those 208 people were entitled to be notified they were in the report and given a chance to review the portion of the report that addresses their involvement.
As frustrating as it may be to not see this crucial information, survivors know even without viewing a page of the report that it will likely show widespread sexual abuse of children and a systematic coverup by leaders of the Catholic Church.
We are well aware that going up against this institution is difficult due to its immense wealth and power. We applaud the Attorney General's efforts to secure the public disclosure of most of the investigative report. Once more, the rule of law has gained a partial victory despite pushback from an "anonymous group" of 16 of those named in the report whose legal fees were paid, at least in part, by the Catholic Church.
We are relieved to know that the horrifying experiences of the survivors who spoke openly with investigators and who worried that their efforts would be in vain, will now be made public. We believe disclosing the extent to which the Church went to shield information, and documenting the immense pain that the victims underwent as a result, will do much to ensure that these crimes never occur within the Catholic community in Maryland again.
CONTACT: David Lorenz, SNAP Maryland leader ([email protected], 301-906-9161), Becky Ianni, Virginia and DC SNAP leader ([email protected], (703) 801-6044) Mike McDonnell, SNAP Communications ([email protected], 267-261-0578) Zach Hiner, Executive Director ([email protected], 517-974-9009) Shaun Dougherty, SNAP Board President ([email protected], 814-341-8386)
(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)