The Maryland Office of the Attorney General released on Wednesday its report detailing decades of sexual abuse within the Archdiocese of Baltimore, Jessica Calefati reports for the Baltimore Banner. The report by state investigators documents how law enforcement members—including prosecutors and a Baltimore County judge—aided church officials in their attempt to cover up some of the incidents and protect known perpetrators.
What are some examples of the cover ups?
Among at least ten examples included in the report is the case of Father Robert Newman, who in 1987, admitted to committing over 100 acts of sexual abuse with 12 boys ages nine to 15 over a 15-year period. Though Newman did resign from the parish, the church attributed his departure to “health reasons” and did not disclose the abuse to parishioners.
The archdiocese later reported Newman to law enforcement, but the police report only documents a single incident with one victim. Newman was not prosecuted for the abuse, and the head of the Sex Crimes Unit at the state’s attorney’s office said that she did not pursue the case because she “sees the value of trying to keep a man like this in the ministry.”
Anything else I should know?
Both chambers of the Maryland General Assembly passed legislation in March that would eliminate the statute of limitations for child sex abuse cases, allowing victims to file lawsuits against perpetrators no matter how long ago the abuse occurred. Gov. Wes Moore said he will sign the bill into law if the state house and senate complete the formal approval process by April 10.
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