Mormon Church accused of turning blind eye to child abuse in foster care program, Ex-prosecutor slams critics of Child Victims Act, urges New York to stop protecting abusers
June 2, 2016 Comments Off on Mormon Church accused of turning blind eye to child abuse in foster care program, Ex-prosecutor slams critics of Child Victims Act, urges New York to stop protecting abusers
– Mormon Church accused of turning blind eye to child abuse in foster care program
– Another Navajo Member Sues LDS Church over Childhood Sexual Abuse
– Author, ex-prosecutor slams critics of Child Victims Act, urges New York to stop protecting abusers
Mormon Church accused of turning blind eye to child abuse in foster care program
The Mormon Church has been hit with another lawsuit saying that it did nothing to protect children in a church-run foster program from sexual abuse.
Two Navajo siblings sued The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Navajo Nation court earlier this year. A second lawsuit made public Tuesday outlines similar allegations.
A Navajo woman identified as B.N. says she was sexually molested and raped multiple times while in foster care and by health care providers in Utah, from 1965 to 1972. She was among thousands of American Indians who participated in the church’s Indian Student Placement Program.
Attorneys representing the three plaintiffs say church leaders did not report the abuse to law enforcement and failed to protect the children who, as adults, suffer from emotional and physical distress….
Another Navajo Member Sues LDS Church over Childhood Sexual Abuse By Andrea Smardon June 1, 2016
A Navajo woman is suing the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, saying she was sexually assaulted while participating in the church’s Lamanite Indian Student Placement Program. This is now the third claim of sexual abuse that has been brought against the Mormon Church by members of the Navajo Nation since March.
The plaintiff identified as B.N. says she was sexually molested and raped between 1965 and 1972 while in church-run foster care in Utah. She decided to file suit after hearing of two Navajo siblings who sued the church earlier this year with similar allegations.
“I just said, you know what, I’ve shut my mouth long enough, and it was just time,” B.N. says. The complaint filed in Navajo Nation District Court outlines sexual abuse by a foster father, a foster brother, and a medical examiner in a church facility. B.N., a member of the LDS Church, says she has been afraid to come forward. That’s what she hopes to change with the lawsuit. “Being able to speak up and have people trust their leaders, that they’re able to come forth with atrocious situations without fear and without being black-balled in any way.”
Criag Vernon is an attorney representing the three plaintiffs. He says church leaders did not report the abuse to law enforcement and failed to protect children in their care….
Author, ex-prosecutor slams critics of Child Victims Act, urges New York to stop protecting abusers
BY Linda Fairstein SPECIAL TO THE NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Wednesday, June 1, 2016
There is no class of people more vulnerable to sexual predators than children. In the overwhelming number of cases, the perpetrators are people who have betrayed the trust of children in their care — relatives, foster families, educators, coaches, clergy and health care professionals — who are far more likely to commit the traumatizing acts than strangers our children are brought up to fear.
The greatest damage has been done to child victims whose voices have long been silenced — first, by their abusers, and then by the senseless laws that have placed arbitrary limits on the time they have to seek justice. We cannot save many who have come before this, but we can change the outlook, the possibility of justice — both in criminal and civil court — for the thousands more who have suffered at the hands of predators and those whom we know will come next. The time to pass the Child Victims Act is now.
There is no reasonable opposition to this argument. What is it opponents fear? Some have raised the concern of false reporting, but the statistics are abundantly clear that this problem represents a small fractional proportion — less than 2% of all claims. For example, California saw about five false claims out of 850 against the Catholic Church. False reporting occurs in every category of crime and it is certainly an issue in cases which fall within the statute of limitations. It is part of the job of every prosecutor to identify those complaints and get them out of the system. They are rare, and they should never be a barrier to the overwhelming number of valid complaints that deserve to be investigated….
Child Abuse Research https://ritualabuse.us
Family of ranchers who inspired Ore. militia takeover accused of abusing teen relative, family behind the Oregon militia cites Mormon beliefs for armed conflicts with government, Mormon leaders to Oregon militia: Your religion isn’t with you, Bill Cosby won’t be charged in two sexual assault cases in Los Angeles, U.N. Peacekeeping in Crisis as Fresh Child Abuse Allegations Emerge in CAR
January 7, 2016 Comments Off on Family of ranchers who inspired Ore. militia takeover accused of abusing teen relative, family behind the Oregon militia cites Mormon beliefs for armed conflicts with government, Mormon leaders to Oregon militia: Your religion isn’t with you, Bill Cosby won’t be charged in two sexual assault cases in Los Angeles, U.N. Peacekeeping in Crisis as Fresh Child Abuse Allegations Emerge in CAR
Family of ranchers who inspired Ore. militia takeover accused of abusing teen relative; grandmother denies claims, calling boy ‘disturbed’ BY Laura Bult, Nicole Hensley NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Tuesday, January 5, 2016
A family of embattled ranchers whose beef with the government inspired the armed takeover of a wildlife refuge in Oregon were once accused of repeatedly abusing a 16-year-old relative — including scraping his chest raw with sandpaper.
OREGON MILITIA FAMILY CITES MORMONISM FOR ARMED CONFLICTS
Dusty Hammond was punched to the ground, forced to hike 10 miles to a family ranch and ordered to eat chewing tobacco, according to a 2004 police report against uncle Steven Hammond and grandfather Dwight Hammond Jr., who surrendered to federal authorities Monday on a 2012 arson conviction….
Steven Hammond used sandpaper to erase a homebrew tattoo from Dusty’s chest. The coarse abrasive left the rancher’s nephew with twin scabs.
Dusty refused to cry during the 10 minutes his uncle spent scraping away the initials “J” and “S,” which the teen had carved using a paperclip. If he had shed a tear, Steven Hammond would have kept going, he told a Harney County deputy at the time of the inquiry.
Dusty’s punishment was requested by his grandparents, Dwight and Susan Hammond, who witnessed the abuse. Steven Hammond later defended it as an attempt “to teach Dusty to respect his body.”
When it was over, Dusty’s grandmother, Susan Hammond, told him to clean his bleeding wounds with alcohol and “not to have a pity party.”….
The family behind the Oregon militia cites Mormon beliefs for armed conflicts with the government
BY Jason Silverstein NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Monday, January 4, 2016
The menacing militia that has taken over a federal building in Oregon for three days (and counting) appears to be under an unlikely influence: Mormonism.
The Bundy family — a rancher clan with two brothers leading the Oregon siege and a history of flare-ups with the feds — have been known to cite their Mormon beliefs as justification for firearm-filled feuds with the government….
The Bundy brothers have not cited Mormonism during their siege, and Cliven — despite his public support for the Hammonds — has distanced himself from the armed takeover….
Mormon leaders to Oregon militia: Your religion isn’t with you
By PEGGY FLETCHER STACK The Salt Lake Tribune Jan 05 2016
If Ammon Bundy and other Mormons involved in taking over a federal wildlife refuge in Oregon believe their religion is backing them, they should reconsider.
Leaders of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints “strongly condemn the armed seizure of the facility,” spokesman Eric Hawkins said in a news release Monday, “and are deeply troubled by the reports that those who have seized the facility suggest that they are doing so based on scriptural principles.”
The release further states that “this armed occupation can in no way be justified on a scriptural basis.”
Americans “are privileged to live in a nation where conflicts with government or private groups can — and should — be settled using peaceful means, according to the laws of the land.”…,
Bill Cosby won’t be charged in two sexual assault cases in Los Angeles
By Jean Casarez and Steve Almasy, CNN Wed January 6, 2016
CNN)Bill Cosby won’t be charged in two cases investigated by the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s office, the DA announced Wednesday.
According to a charge evaluation sheet, prosecutors think neither of the two allegations could have resulted in charges within the statute of limitations.
The accusers, listed as Jane Does No. 1 and No. 2, had accused Cosby of sexual assault.
“We are satisfied that the Los Angeles DA’s office fully and fairly evaluated all the facts and evidence, and came to the right conclusion,” said Chris Tayback, a lawyer for Cosby.
Jane Doe No. 2 was identified by her lawyer as Chloe Goins, who accused the 78-year-old comedian of drugging her and sexually assaulting her at the Playboy Mansion in August 2008.
Prosecutors in District Attorney Jackie Lacey’s office said the two potential criminal offenses described by Jane Doe No. 2 would be misdemeanors, and they were barred by the statute of limitations from prosecuting.
The office looked at possible felonies, such as sexual battery by restraint, but said the evidence was insufficient to prove a crime was committed….
U.N. Peacekeeping in Crisis as Fresh Child Abuse Allegations Emerge in CAR
By Conor Gaffey On 1/6/16
United Nations (U.N.) peacekeeping personnel must lose their status as “a privileged class,” according to a former senior U.N. official, after fresh allegations of sexual abuse of minors by peacekeepers in Central African Republic (CAR) emerged.
The U.N. peacekeeping mission in CAR—known as MINUSCA— said on Tuesday that it was investigating allegations concerning sexual exploitation and abuse of minors, as well as other misconduct, by peacekeepers and international forces. The U.N. launched an investigation into its mission in CAR in June 2015 after allegations a peacekeeper sexually abused a young girl. Former colonial power France has also investigated claims of child abuse by its soldiers stationed in CAR .
MINUSCA said that staff from the U.N. Children’s Fund (UNICEF) in the capital Bangui had paid four visits to four alleged child victims of abuse, who have been provided with medical treatment and psychosocial assessments. MINUSCA declined to specify which countries the accused peacekeepers came from or how many were involved in the allegations. Unnamed sources told AFP that the peacekeepers came from Gabon, Egypt and Morocco, and AFP reported that the allegations brings the total number of sexual abuse cases against U.N. peacekeepers in CAR to 26….
March 24, 2015 Comments Off on Former Boy Scout sues Mormon church for sexual abuse, Going Clear Scientology documentary
LDS Church: No tolerance for sex abuse in scouting
By Scott Zamost and Kyra Phillips, CNN
Mon March 23, 2015
Former Boy Scout sues Mormon church for sexual abuse
(CNN) The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, which is the largest sponsor of Boy Scout troops in the United States, says the church has strong measures in place to prevent the sexual abuse of scouts, as claims have been made it hasn’t done enough.
In the first interview about allegations of abuse in Mormon church-sponsored scouting troops, Church Elder L. Whitney Clayton told CNN that the church is at the forefront for prevention of child abuse….
Over several months, CNN examined allegations of abuse that were detailed in at least five lawsuits filed against the church and the scouts.
But Clayton said the church today is proactive, even constructing its buildings “in such a way as to try to avoid any situation where child abuse could occur.”….
The scoutmaster, Vance Hein, had been forced in resign from scouting in the early 1990s after reports surfaced that he failed to report a fellow scoutmaster who was engaged in homosexual activities. That scoutmaster ended up going to prison for sexual assaults on minors.
Hein’s name was added to the Boy Scouts of America’s ineligible volunteer files, which are widely known as the “perversion files.” The documents, which were made public in 2012, are lists of scout leaders suspected of sexual abuse or homosexual activity.
However, three years after being kicked out of scouting, Hein was allowed to rejoin the scouts after getting letters of recommendation attesting to his character. One of those letters was from Hein’s influential Mormon Bishop Jack Moyer, who wrote that Hein was “highly respected and liked.”….
But in a deposition taken as part of the lawsuit last year, he acknowledged that he would not have written the letter knowing what he later found out about Hein.
The lawsuit charged that Hein “actively groomed young boys under his charge for later sexual molestation.” Hein eventually was convicted of molesting Novak. He is now in prison for violating probation in the Novak case….
Going Clear is a ‘must-see’ Scientology documentary
Owen Gleiberman 20 March 2015
….Working with rare footage, Gibney burrows into the enigma of Scientology’s founder, L Ron Hubbard, capturing glints of delusion and megalomania. Hubbard‘s rise began in the 1930s, and he quickly became an astoundingly prolific science-fiction writer. But then in 1950 he published Dianetics, the perpetual bestseller in which he helped invent the principles of the therapeutic ‘self-help’ books that grew hugely popular by the 1970s. In Scientology, he wrapped these ideas around a theological core of interplanetary gibberish that could have come straight out of one his pulp novels. Going Clear captures how Hubbard fused reality, fantasy and the pursuit of enlightenment in a way that, according to the film’s witnesses, expressed his own highly unstable and even violent nature – at one point Gibney shows how Hubbard even told his wife that one of their children had died, just to manipulate her. Hubbard wound up a sea-faring outlaw on the run from US tax officials, and in Going Clear he emerges as a broken dictator who founded a religion based on control because he was so desperate to control his own demons.
Hubbard constructed Scientology around a ritual known as the ‘audit’, which is like a conventional therapy session fused with a Catholic confession and a visit to Room 101 in Orwell’s 1984. A member sits down and digs into their secrets and private traumas, as the auditor asks questions and takes notes, recording the subject’s responses on an ‘E-meter’, a gadget invented by Hubbard. Haggis, a Scientologist for 35 years before his highly publicised break with the Church in 2009, tells us how incredibly good an audit session could make him feel, as if he’d purged himself of all his toxins. Gibney suggests Hubbard’s method of healing was really just a superficial take on Freudian therapy, a comparison that Hubbard scorned – though only after his techniques had been rejected as rubbish by legitimate psychiatrists. Going Clear, however, suggests a dramatic difference between auditing and traditional therapy: it claims that the Church of Scientology holds on to the notes from the sessions and uses them to blackmail its members into staying….
Gibney interviews a handful of high-level Scientology officers who left the Church and are now willing to denounce it. Marty Rathbun, who spent years as Miscavige’s right-hand man, was at the very centre of the citadel, and his testimony has an unsettling authority. He alleges that Miscavige, in actions worthy of the Khmer Rouge, subjected his loyal officials to rituals of abuse, making them ‘confess’ to imagined crimes and assaulting them if they didn’t comply. The astounding thing is that when the victims were given the chance to exit this torture program, none of them did. They thought they deserved to be punished….
January 24, 2014 Comments Off on Lawsuit: Mormon church covered up sexual abuse at Hawaii camps
Lawsuit: Mormon church covered up sexual abuse at Hawaii camps
Courts Two Utah men claim they were sexually molested decades ago as boys.
By Janelle Stecklein
The Salt Lake Tribune Jan 23 2014
Two Utah men are suing the Mormon church claiming that decades ago they were sexually molested as boys after the church recruited them to pick pineapples in Hawaii.
A lawsuit filed Wednesday in the 2nd Circuit Court in Hawaii, alleges that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, the Maui Land and Pineapple Company Inc. and Youth Developmental Enterprises, recruited youths from Mormon communities in Utah and southern Idaho to go to camps in Maui to pick pineapples in the 1970s and 1980s, which led to them being sexually molested.
The camps were closed in the ‘90s, the lawsuit claims.
The men, now 41 and 42, now live in the Salt Lake City area.
The lawsuit claims that Mormon men in their 20s, who qualified for supervisory positions after completing their two-year missions, ran the camps, which recruited minors from church wards and scouting organizations.
The lawsuit claims that one man, who was appointed camp coordinator, branch president and stake high counselor for one of the camps, molested the two boys from 1986 until 1989.
The lawsuit also claims that the defendants knew of the camp coordinator’s “pedophilic sexual violence.”
Cody Craynor, a spokesman for the LDS church, said, “The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has zero tolerance for abuse of any kind and works actively to prevent abuse. This case was filed yesterday, and many details in the legal complaint are unclear. The church will examine the allegations and respond appropriately.”
Lawsuit: Mormon Boys Molested At Maui Pineapple Farms, Church Knew 01/23/2014
Two Utah men are suing the Mormon church, alleging that, decades ago, they were sexually molested by a church camp coordinator when they worked on a Maui pineapple farm.
The lawsuit was filed in the 2nd Circuit Court in Hawaii on Wednesday. It claims that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS) and Maui Land & Pineapple Company recruited boys in the 1970s and 80s from Mormon communities to work in the camps, where the plaintiffs, now in their 40s, were molested.
The Maui camps paid boys to pick and grow pineapples and were supervised by LDS men in their twenties who had completed their two-year missions and could help train the boys for missionary life. The defendant, an Idaho man, was a camp coordinator and, in addition to being the boys’ boss, served as their spiritual leader.
The lawsuit claims that the defendant molested the two boys from 1986 until 1988, and that the church knew of the camp coordinator’s “pedophilic sexual violence.”….
A church spokesman said in a statement Thursday that “the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has zero tolerance for abuse of any kind and works actively to prevent abuse. This case was filed yesterday, and many details in the legal complaint are unclear. The church will examine the allegations and respond appropriately.”