Former children’s TV show host is linked to child abuse case, Study Links Child Abuse, Neglect to Earlier Onset of Bipolar Disorder
February 12, 2016 Comments Off on Former children’s TV show host is linked to child abuse case, Study Links Child Abuse, Neglect to Earlier Onset of Bipolar Disorder
Former children’s TV show host is linked to child abuse case By Associated Press February 11, 2016
A California judge has determined that a man recently arrested in a San Diego suburb is a fugitive wanted in a 1979 child sexual abuse investigation in Louisiana, where he was a children’s TV show host known as “Mr. Wonder.”
A San Diego County Superior Court judge ruled Thursday after a brief identity hearing.
Authorities say Frank John Selas III assumed a new identity in the San Diego area, where he often invited children to his house to swim and was a Cub Scout leader. He was arrested in January.
The ruling sets the stage for extradition proceedings to begin.
Study Links Child Abuse, Neglect to Earlier Onset of Bipolar Disorder HealthDay Feb. 11, 2016 By Robert Preidt
THURSDAY, Feb. 11, 2016 (HealthDay News) — People with bipolar disorder who have a history of being abused or neglected as children may have more severe symptoms and a higher risk of suicide, new research suggests.
“Our findings have important implications for clinical practice, as they suggest that a history of childhood maltreatment could be used as an early indicator of high risk for poor outcomes among individuals with bipolar disorder,” said study author Jessica Agnew-Blais, a postdoctoral researcher at King’s College London in England.
“This information could be valuable for identifying patients with bipolar disorder who may benefit from greater support and treatment,” she said in a college news release.
The researchers reviewed 30 studies. While they only found an association, rather than a cause-and-effect link, they said bipolar patients who suffered from neglect or physical, sexual or emotional abuse as children were more likely to have more severe manic, depressive and psychotic symptoms compared to those who weren’t abused.
People with bipolar disorder who were abused as children also had a higher risk of anxiety disorders and substance and alcohol abuse disorders, the research showed.
Those abused as children developed bipolar symptoms more than four years earlier, the study found. They also were nearly four times more likely to have post-traumatic stress disorder. And they were nearly twice as likely to attempt suicide as those who weren’t mistreated during childhood, the researchers said…. The study was published Feb. 9 in The Lancet Psychiatry.
Catholic bishops not obliged to report clerical child abuse, Vatican says, Beyond clergy: Ex-Boy Scouts tap Minn. law to press sex abuse claims
February 11, 2016 Comments Off on Catholic bishops not obliged to report clerical child abuse, Vatican says, Beyond clergy: Ex-Boy Scouts tap Minn. law to press sex abuse claims
Catholic bishops not obliged to report clerical child abuse, Vatican says
Vatican guide says ‘not necessarily’ bishop’s duty to report suspects to police despite Pope Francis’s vows to redress Catholic church’s legacy of child abuse
Cardinal Bernard Law, who was forced to resign over sexual abuse scandals in his Boston archdiocese, where 150 priests were accused of molesting children.
Stephanie Kirchgaessner in Rome
Wednesday 10 February 2016
The Catholic church is telling newly appointed bishops that it is “not necessarily” their duty to report accusations of clerical child abuse and that only victims or their families should make the decision to report abuse to police.
A document that spells out how senior clergy members ought to deal with allegations of abuse, which was recently released by the Vatican, emphasised that, though they must be aware of local laws, bishops’ only duty was to address such allegations internally.
According to the state of civil laws of each country where reporting is obligatory, it is not necessarily the duty of the bishop to report suspects to authorities, the police or state prosecutors in the moment when they are made aware of crimes or sinful deeds, the training document states.
The training guidelines were written by a controversial French monsignor and psychotherapist, Tony Anatrella, who serves as a consultant to the Pontifical Council for the Family. The Vatican released the guidelines – which are part of a broader training programme for newly named bishops at a press conference earlier this month and is now seeking feedback.
Details of the Catholic church’s policy were first reported in a column by a veteran Vatican journalist, John Allen, associate editor of the Catholic news site, Cruxnow.com.
Allen noted that a special commission created by Pope Francis, the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors, had appeared to play no role in the training programme, even though it is supposed to be developing “best practices” to prevent and deal with clerical abuse.
Indeed, a church official familiar with the commission on abuse said it was the committee’s position that reporting abuse to civil authorities was a “moral obligation, whether the civil law requires it or not”. The official said the committee would be involved in future training efforts….
Beyond clergy: Ex-Boy Scouts tap Minn. law to press sex abuse claims
Todd Melby Feb 10, 2016
Jim McDonough is suing the Boy Scouts of America and its North Star Council claiming he was sexually abused by his scoutmaster….
Many stories like McDonough’s have come to light in the nearly three years since the Legislature passed the Minnesota Child Victims Act. Most have been focused on the hundreds of claims made against priests accused of sexually abusing children.
But the law, which extends the statute of limitations for older abuse claims, wasn’t written to respond exclusively to clergy abuse. And the Catholic Church hasn’t been the only target of lawsuits aimed at shedding light on a hidden past. Boy Scout organizations are also grappling with accusations of child molestation.
McDonough decided to use the law to sue the Boy Scouts of America and one of its local affiliates, the Northern Star Council. At least 16 lawsuits are pending in Minnesota against the Boy Scouts, including McDonough’s civil action. Most target the Northern Star Council. Three other lawsuits list another council as a defendant. At least 12 additional suits are expected to be filed before the law’s May 25 deadline….
McDonough’s suit seeks at least $50,000 from the Scouts. The Northern Star Council, which represent troops in 21 Minnesota counties and four counties in western Wisconsin, declined to talk about abuse suits filed by McDonough and others….
One of McDonough’s lawyers, Peter Janci, won a $19.9 million verdict against the Boy Scouts in 2010 in Portland, Ore. Janci says that when it comes to sexual abuse against children, the Boy Scouts have some things in common with the Roman Catholic Church.
“They both involve organizations that really believe in their mission. At times, that has led to them to make decisions where they put reputation of the organization above safety and health of individuals,” he said.
In the case of the Boy Scouts of America, that included the creation of what it called “ineligible volunteer” files, Janci said. When the Scouts learned that a volunteer had sexually molested or raped a child, it often created a file so it could bar that person from volunteering in another city or state.
Between 1955 and 1984, the Boy Scouts of America created 1,300 of these files. A judge ordered those files released, with some information redacted, after the Portland trial.
A small percentage of the “ineligible volunteer” files were atheists or homosexuals. The Scouts barred gay men and lesbians from the organization until just recently. But the vast majority of files focused on sexual molestation. They became known as the “Perversion Files.”
The Boy Scouts has been keeping secret tabs on suspected abusers since the 1920s, but it didn’t routinely report those people to police. The organization began requiring “mandatory reporting of suspected abuse” in 2011….
Horrifying regime of violence and sexual abuse, Congress moves to confront military child abuse with Talia’s Law
February 10, 2016 Comments Off on Horrifying regime of violence and sexual abuse, Congress moves to confront military child abuse with Talia’s Law
REVEALED: A horrifying regime of violence and sexual abuse: This chilling Mail dossier exposes the vital evidence the Deepcut coroner refuses to hear
By RICHARD PENDLEBURY FOR THE DAILY MAIL 9 February 2016
Private Kate Wilson claims she was assaulted and sexually harassed
Said she witnessed horrific abuse after joining Army as a teenage recruit
She spoke out as second inquest into death of Private Cheryl James began
Mail investigation has revealed that a ‘wider culture of sexual abuse’ within the Army may be what the Deepcut coroner should now be considering
By Richard Pendlebury for the Daily Mail
For Private Kate Wilson, the final insult came when an administrative major at Deepcut Barracks — a man — told her: ‘What you don’t seem to realise is that you are just a number to us. We have no further use for you.’
In the 18 months since Private Wilson had joined as a teenage recruit, the British Army had ‘used’ her in a quite horrific fashion.
She had, she says, been viciously assaulted for refusing to sleep with one of her bosses, sexually harassed by other male non-commissioned officers, urinated upon while asleep, and, finally, crippled for life thanks to the carelessness of a misogynistic instructor.
That injury — a broken hip — led to her interview with that callous major, and a medical discharge from the career she had wanted since she was four years old. She still suffers with the injury 20 years later.
Wilson was by no means unique. During her ‘training’, she had witnessed a serious but unpunished sexual assault by an instructor on one of her sleeping female room-mates, and the daily abuse of other vulnerable female recruits — little more than children — by much older NCOs.
‘These were men with no honour and no pride,’ she told me this week. ‘We were kids, and they were monsters; vile and barbaric. A lot of people in the Army who could have helped knew what was happening — and yet they did nothing.’….
Congress moves to confront military child abuse with Talia’s Law
By Drew Gerber, Medill News Service
The House on Tuesday passed a bill that would require anyone employed by the Defense Department to report cases of suspected child abuse on military installations to state child protective service agencies in addition to reporting such suspected crimes up their chain of command.
The legislation was approved by voice vote and sent to the Senate for consideration.
Called Talia’s Law, the bill is named for five-year-old Talia Williams who was tortured and beaten to death by her father — an active-duty Army specialist at the time — and step-mother in 2005 at Wheeler Army Airfield in Hawaii.
Talia’s mother, Tarshia Williams, sued the U.S. government in 2008 for what she argued were failures by military officials to report suspicions that her daughter was being abused. Williams was awarded $2 million in a settlement last May…..
Citing the 29,000 cases of child abuse and neglect in the military in the past decade, Gabbard said on the House floor Tuesday that her bill creates the same protections for military children that exist for any other child.
Rates of child abuse and neglect in the military, though half the rate typically seen in the civilian population, have been on the rise since 2010, according to a 2014 memorandum from Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense Rosemary Williams….
February 6, 2016 Comments Off on The Survivorship Ritual Abuse and Child Abuse 2016 Conference – May 2016
The Survivorship Ritual Abuse and Child Abuse 2016 Conference – May 2016
On May 7 – 8, 2016 Survivorship will have a conference at the Executive Inn & Suite – 1755 Embaracadero – Oakland, CA 94606.
Two days of survivor and professional workshops, a great price, good food, a safe environment and working with others who are survivors. Working together in this unique opportunity to bring the survivor movement forward.
Speakers will include: Wendy Hoffman, Dr. Alison Miller, Dr. Steve Frankel, Neil Brick, Dr. Randy Noblitt, Pam Perksin and others.
To register for our conference or to get on our conference mailing list, please write firstname.lastname@example.org
February 4, 2016 Comments Off on Judge Won’t Stop Bill Cosby Sex Assault Trial Due to Old ‘Deal’
Judge Won’t Stop Bill Cosby Sex Assault Trial Due to Old ‘Deal’ Feb 3 2016
A Pennsylvania judge ruled Wednesday that a sexual assault case against Bill Cosby can move forward after finding that a 2005 decision not to charge him with a crime doesn’t stop prosecutors from putting him on trial now.
The actor’s lawyers claimed that the Montgomery County District Attorney’s office made a no-prosecution deal a decade ago that is still in force, but the current DA argued it wasn’t a binding agreement.
After a two-day hearing, the judge decided not to toss out a charge of aggravated indecent assault against the 78-year-old comedian, setting the stage for a trial.
The charge stems from allegations by Andrea Constand that Cosby drugged and molested her at his home in the Philadelphia suburbs in 2004.
Cosby’s lead defense attorney, Brian McMonagle, declined to say Wednesday whether he will appeal the judge’s decision, but Cosby’s attorneys have that option.
Cosby’s publicist said the decision will be appealed. “After two days’ presentation of evidence and law in support of Mr. Cosby’s habeas petition, the decision reached by the court was wrong,” publicist Andrew Wyatt said….
Cosby has denied any criminal wrongdoing. In a deposition he gave in a lawsuit filed by Constand, he admitted he gave her Benadryl and wine but said the encounter was consensual….
Former Prosecutor Who Declined to Charge Bill Cosby in 2005 Says he Believed Accuser Andrea Constand, Good news, bad news for Bill Cosby in civil suits in California, Catholic Church settles 30 of 40 priest sex abuse lawsuits, Pitcairn mayor charged with possessing child abuse material wants to face ‘local law’
February 3, 2016 Comments Off on Former Prosecutor Who Declined to Charge Bill Cosby in 2005 Says he Believed Accuser Andrea Constand, Good news, bad news for Bill Cosby in civil suits in California, Catholic Church settles 30 of 40 priest sex abuse lawsuits, Pitcairn mayor charged with possessing child abuse material wants to face ‘local law’
Former Prosecutor Who Declined to Charge Bill Cosby in 2005 Says he Believed Accuser Andrea Constand
By Nicole Weisensee Egan 02/02/2016
Even though he declined to charge Bill Cosby when sexual assault allegations were brought to him in 2005, and despite spending much of his testimony Tuesday alleging that accuser Andrea Constand’s story had “inconsistencies,” former Montgomery County District Attorney Bruce L. Castor, Jr. nonetheless testified he thinks Constand was telling the truth.
“I believed Ms. Constand’s account,” Castor said at a hearing in Norristown, Pennsylvania. “What I think and what is provable in a courtroom are two different things. What I think is that Andrea Constand was inappropriately touched by Mr. Cosby.
“I’m analyzing back in 2005 what I can prove,” Castor said. “All of those combined together in my mind created a situation where she had ruined her own credibility and would not be believed by a juror. That does not mean she was not telling the truth.”
Castor testified he never interviewed or even met Constand himself. He testified for more than six hours Tuesday at a pre-trial hearing, and was the only witness to testify.
Constand, 42, is the former director of operations for the Temple University women’s basketball team who went to authorities in January 2005 with allegations that, in January 2004, Cosby gave her pills at his house that knocked her out and then sexually assaulted her.
Castor, the Montgomery County district attorney at the time, did not file criminal charges, but after Constand sued Cosby, she and the comedian agreed to a civil settlement in late 2006.
Cosby has denied Constand’s allegation, saying the sexual contact was consensual. He has also denied similar allegations from more than 50 other women…. http://www.people.com/article/bill-cosby-former-prosecutor-says-he-believes-accuser-andrea-constand
Good news, bad news for Bill Cosby in civil suits in California
Maria Puente, USA TODAY February 2, 2016
As Bill Cosby faced criminal sexual-assault charges in a Pennsylvania courthouse on Tuesday, there was good news and bad news for him in civil court in Los Angeles.
Chloe Goins, the youngest and most recent of Cosby’s five-dozen accusers, dropped her civil suit against him, according to the Associated Press, which cited federal court records showing the suit was dropped without explanation.
Meanwhile, in another civil case in Los Angeles, Cosby was ordered to sit for another grilling in a deposition for a lawsuit alleging he sexually abused accuser Judy Huth at the Playboy Mansion around 1974 when she was 15.
Depositions have not been good for Cosby: His testimony in a deposition in a civil suit filed by an accuser in 2005 played a role in the filing of the criminal charges against him in Pennsylvania.
Cosby resisted sitting for the first deposition in the Huth case but was ordered by a judge to do so. When he didn’t answer every question, Huth’s attorney, Gloria Allred (who represents nearly half of the five-dozen women who have accused Cosby), sought to compel him to sit for another….
The Los Angeles district attorney declined last month to file charges against Cosby in connection with Goins’ accusations because the California statute of limitations for sexual assault had expired.
She had earlier filed a civil suit in federal court against Cosby alleging sexual battery. It was one of a half-dozen civil suits pending against Cosby stemming from the accusations that he had drugged and/or raped dozens of women in episodes dating to the mid-1960s. .
It is not clear why Goins dropped the suit, but when a plaintiff moves to dismiss her own lawsuit it often means the parties have come to a settlement. And often such a settlement is confidential.
One other accuser suit against Cosby, for defamation, was dismissed by a judge in Pittsburgh last month.
Goins’ lawyer, Spencer Kuvins, declined to comment. Cosby’s spokesman did not return emails seeking comment…. http://www.usatoday.com/story/life/people/2016/02/02/civil-suit-against-bill-cosby-dismissed-accuser/79698200/
EXCLUSIVE: Catholic Church settles 30 of 40 priest sex abuse lawsuits
Jan 29, 2016 By Keoki Kerr
HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) –
The Roman Catholic Church has reached settlements in 30 lawsuits filed by people in Hawaii who claim they were sexually abused by priests decades ago when they were children.
They are among 63 people who have made abuse allegations against priests in 40 lawsuits, according to legal documents obtained by Hawaii News Now.
Some of the cases have been reported in the media, such as the 2012 lawsuit filed by Mark Pinkosh claiming two priests at St. Anthony Church in Kailua sexually abused him.
Pinkosh said when he told then-Father Joseph Ferrario that another priest had raped him, Ferrario told him to keep the incidents secret and then Ferrario raped him. Ferrario, who is now deceased, went on to become the bishop of the Catholic Church in Hawaii.
Other cases have been kept quiet, with the plaintiffs listed as John or Jane Roe.
Hawaii News Now has learned that Pinkosh and 62 other alleged victims of priest sex abuse went to mediation last year with the Catholic Church to try to settle their 40 lawsuits…. http://www.hawaiinewsnow.com/story/31095979/exclusive-catholic-church-settles-30-of-40-priest-sex-abuse-lawsuits
Pitcairn mayor charged with possessing child abuse material wants to face ‘local law’
Lawyer calls for trial to be held on Pitcairn Island, not in Auckland, as ex-mayor Michael Warren denies all 25 charges
Elle Hunt Tuesday 2 February 2016
The lawyer representing a former Pitcairn Island mayor facing charges of possessing child abuse films and photos has said the case should be dealt with under local laws rather than by a court in New Zealand.
Michael Warren, who served as mayor of the tiny British territory in the South Pacific from 2008 to 2013, appeared by video link from Pitcairn to an Auckland courtroom on Monday to deny 25 charges relating to more than 1,000 child abuse films, images and messages.
As mayor in 2010, it was alleged in court, Warren accidentally sent an email to a diplomatic staff member from an address in someone else’s name.
It was further alleged in court that the staff member searched for the address online and found it was linked to an online chat site containing explicit material.
Sergeant Geoff Medland, an officer seconded to Pitcairn Island in 2009 as part of the assistance provided by New Zealand police to the territory, was made aware of the allegations in late April 2010.
The crown alleges Medland found more than 1,000 child abuse images and videos in a search of Warren’s home on 26 May 2010.
Warren was arrested by Medland on behalf of the British high commission and charged with 20 counts of possessing child sexual abuse content under section 160 of the UK’s Criminal Justice Act 1988. He also received five charges under the Pitcairn summary offences ordinance for possession of indecent articles involving adults….
Warren pleaded not guilty in March 2013.
Pitcairn, settled in 1789 by Fletcher Christian and the mutineering crew of the Bounty, is a group of four volcanic islands that form the last British overseas territory in the Pacific. It has a population of about 50 people, originating from four families.
The hearing is set down for a week in Auckland and will reconvene on Pitcairn Island later this month.
In 2004 and 2006, seven of the island’s 12 men faced a total of 55 sex crimes, some dating back 40 years. Six were found guilty, with four sentenced to jail terms of up to five years. The crimes included rape, incest and indecent assault against girls from the age of seven. http://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/feb/03/pitcairn-mayor-charged-with-possessing-child-abuse-material-wants-to-face-local-law