‘7th Heaven’ actor under investigation for child abuse, Files on Winona Diocese clergy who abused children are made public

October 8, 2014 Comments Off on ‘7th Heaven’ actor under investigation for child abuse, Files on Winona Diocese clergy who abused children are made public

‘7th Heaven’ actor reportedly under investigation for child abuse
– Stephen Collins Network Yanks ‘7th Heaven’ From Schedule
– ‘7th Heaven’ Dad Stephen Collins Confesses on tape to Child Molestation
– Files on Winona Diocese clergy who abused children are made public
– ‘Terror mixed with homesickness meant I cried myself to sleep, night after night’

‘7th Heaven’ actor reportedly under investigation for child abuse
By Mark Shanahan and Meredith Goldstein
Globe Staff   October 07, 2014
Actor Stephen Collins, who played the Rev. Eric Camden on the long-running WB family show “7th Heaven,” is reportedly under investigation for child molestation after an alleged recording surfaced of him confessing in couples therapy to exposing himself to young girls and molesting an 11-year-old, according to TMZ and the New York Daily News. (TMZ has posted the alleged audio on its website. The Daily News reports an NYPD investigation has been confirmed with an unnamed department source.)
http://www.bostonglobe.com/arts/2014/10/07/says-stephen-collins-dropped-out-weeks-ago/1qK9xbya309zOuloQOEllJ/story.html

Stephen Collins Network Yanks ‘7th Heaven’ From Schedule 10/7/2014 BY TMZ STAFF
Stephen Collins’ confession he molested young girls is already causing collateral damage … episodes of his most famous TV show, “7th Heaven” are being yanked off the air.

A rep for TV Guide Network — which airs re-runs of the show — tells TMZ the two episodes remaining on the schedule will not air — nor will any future episodes of “7th Heaven.”

We’re told … programming honchos dropped the hammer on the show … after seeing our story that Collins was recorded during a therapy session … confessing to acts of molestation years ago….
http://www.tmz.com/#Article/2014/10/07/stephen-collins-child-molestation-7th-heaven-audio-tape-nypd-investigation

‘7th Heaven’ Dad Stephen Collins
Confesses on tape to Child Molestation

NYPD Investigating [AUDIO]
BY TMZ STAFF
EXCLUSIVE

Stephen Collins — who played the pastor/dad on “7th Heaven” — confessed to his estranged wife he was a child molester, and it’s all on tape … a tape obtained by TMZ. And the New York Police Dept. is now conducting an active criminal investigation involving sexual contact with multiple children.

Collins — who is in the middle of a nasty, prolonged divorce with actress Faye Grant — revealed to her in 2012 he had molested and/or exposed himself to several underage girls years before. Collins and Grant went to a therapist where she peppered him with questions about the incidents … and he not only answered, he was specific.

Here’s what Collins didn’t know at the time. Grant taped the therapy session. We’re told her lawyer advised her it was legal to secretly record the conversation because in California you’re allowed to secretly record conversations to gather evidence the other person committed a violent felony … and molesting a child under the age of 14 qualifies….

TMZ has learned … the NYPD is in possession of the tape, and last Wednesday 2 NYPD detectives from the Special Victims Unit flew to L.A. to interview Grant. We’re told they asked her about the tape and about other potential witnesses….
http://www.tmz.com/2014/10/07/stephen-collins-child-molestation-7th-heaven-audio-tape-nypd-investigation/

Files on Winona Diocese clergy who abused children are made public
JEAN HOPFENSPERGER , Star Tribune  October 7, 2014
Newly unsealed papers expose child sexual abuse by 14 priests in the Winona Diocese.

Winona Bishop John Quinn said the diocese “has worked diligently” to enforce abuse prevention protocols.

The 14 priests worked in all four high schools in the Diocese of Winona and at 45 parishes across southern Minnesota. But the paper trail exposing their sexual abuse of boys and girls had long been sealed — until Tuesday, when a court order pried open the records.

For the first time, the priests’ mental health reports, sexual abuse complaints and hundreds more documents were made public as part of a groundbreaking lawsuit making its way through Ramsey District Court.

The documents also show that the Winona Diocese “anticipates eventual bankruptcy” as a result of that lawsuit and others being filed under the new Minnesota Child Victims Act.

The files indicate that the diocese did not report claims of child sex abuse to law enforcement, did not remove offenders from ministry, and continued to financially support them even as abuse was known.

The document release comes in response to a lawsuit filed last year by a man who said he was abused by former priest Thomas Adamson in the 1970s. Adamson was accused of molesting boys in the Winona Diocese before being transferred to the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis, where he allegedly abused the man in St. Paul Park….

While many files about Adamson were released in recent months through the archdiocese lawsuit, the Winona documents shed light on a different set of offenders.

The sexual abuse ranged from oral sex to fondling to rape, the documents showed. Emotional abuse often accompanied the physical abuse.

For example, the Rev. Richard Hatch would force one of his boy victims to have oral sex and then make him go to confession and confess it as if he were the cause of it, documents showed.

Like other dioceses, Winona kept the priests on the move, even after serious allegation of abuse….
http://www.startribune.com/local/278388541.html

‘Terror mixed with homesickness meant I cried myself to sleep, night after night’
Ivan Yates Published 05/10/2014

In 1968 – as a very young boy, Ivan Yates was sent to a boarding school in Bray. In the early part of his book he describes his misery there -and the borderline abuse he suffered:

The worst aspect of it was the constant fear. Charles Mansfield, headmaster and owner of the school, flattered himself that he was a disciplinarian. In fact, he was a sadist, liberally administering corporal punishment for any infringement of a forest of rules. Beatings were meted out with a slipper or a hairbrush on bare buttocks.

In my second year, I was in a dormitory adjacent to the headmaster’s office. If we were caught talking at night or early in the morning, he would come in and beat us. It became a familiar ritual. When he came round to each bed, we would turn over, pull down our pyjamas and receive our beating, faces in our pillows, counting the blows. Some boys got punished much worse than I did. One boy was black and blue from constant thrashings. At eight and nine years old, I was out of my depth. It was unremitting torture.

As I grew up, I remembered the beatings, but not the overwhelming sadness. It took therapy for me to recall the day, when I was about 11, when Mr Mansfield asked me to come and see him in the French room.

When I arrived, he was in the room, alone, standing by a table in the corner. He asked me to pull up a chair and sit down in front of him, explaining that as part of his sex education duties, he had individual consultations with the boys. He needed to see that we were developing properly. He asked me to take down my trousers and pants, so that he could examine me. I vividly recall that we were standing so close together that I could see the tiny blood vessels on his cheeks and could smell him. I did as I was told.
http://www.independent.ie/entertainment/books/terror-mixed-with-homesickness-meant-i-cried-myself-to-sleep-night-after-night-30633240.html

 

Minnesota cult leader charged with 59 counts of sexual abuse said sex was ‘God’s word’, Killer Luke Mitchell demands Satanic books in jail due to his ‘religious beliefs’

April 18, 2014 Comments Off on Minnesota cult leader charged with 59 counts of sexual abuse said sex was ‘God’s word’, Killer Luke Mitchell demands Satanic books in jail due to his ‘religious beliefs’

– Minnesota cult leader charged with 59 counts of sexual abuse
– Report: Accused child molester said sex was ‘God’s word’
– Killer Luke Mitchell demands Satanic books in jail
– Jodi Jones killer Luke Mitchell demands right to study Satanic textbooks in prison due to his ‘religious beliefs’

Minnesota cult leader charged with 59 counts of sexual abuse
Fugitive Victor Barnard, head of ‘Maidens of River Road,’ accused of sex acts with minors. Girls as young as 12 were sent to live with the ‘messiah,’ who is accused of sexually abusing them.
BY Deborah Hastings NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Wednesday, April 16, 2014

A minister who dressed like Jesus and presided over virgins he called the “maidens” faces 59 counts of criminal sexual conduct involving underage girls he allegedly abused for years at a Minnesota religious camp.
Fugitive Victor Arden Barnard, 52, is believed to be somewhere near Seattle or Tacoma, authorities said.
A nationwide warrant has been issued for his arrest.

The self-proclaimed “messiah” ran a compound in Minnesota’s northern Pine County, where ministered to a group of women and girls he referred to as “maidens.” For several years, he routinely abused two girls sent to live with him at the ages of 12 and 13, according to a criminal complaint filed against him….
They lived in a place called “Shepherd’s Camp,” where Barnard also resided, apart from this wife and children.

“Barnard repeatedly preached to (B) that he represented Christ in the flesh, that Jesus Christ had Mary Magdalene and other women who followed him, that King Solomon slept with many concubines, that the firstborn child was to be sacrificed to God, and that it was normal for Barnard to have sex with her because it was in God’s Word,” the complaint states…. http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/minnesota-cult-leader-charged-59-sexual-abuse-counts-maidens-article-1.1758703

Report: Accused child molester said sex was ‘God’s word’
KREM.com Spokane/Coeur dAlene Videos

SPOKANE, Wash. — KREM 2 News has been tracking local associates who may be connected to a man wanted for sexually abusing children in Minnesota. Authorities believe Victor Barnard, 52, is hiding out somewhere in Spokane. MORE: Man wanted for sex abuse in Minnesota may be in Spokane Victor Barnard, 52, is charged with 59 counts of sexual misconduct with children. Court documents say he abused two members of his cult-like church where his was a pastor in Pine County, Minnesota. The abuse dates back to the year 2000, according to the investigation. According the Pioneer Press in Minnesota, Barnard likened himself to Jesus and told one of his victims it was in “God’s word” for him to have sex with her. Barnard would reportedly call girls to a lodge when he wanted to have sex with them, and would order them to not tell anyone about it…. http://news.yahoo.com/video/report-accused-child-molester-said-134909009.html 

Killer Luke Mitchell demands Satanic books in jail 18/04/14 JODI Jones’ killer, Luke Mitchell, has demanded the right to be given Satanic textbooks in prison because of his “religious beliefs”.

Mitchell has reportedly asked for six books, including The Devil’s Notebook and Satan Speaks, after claiming access to occult materials was his human right. Among the texts is The Satanic Bible, which exhorts the creation of a lawless society where human sacrifice and murder is not just tolerated but encouraged.

The 25-year-old is understood to have made the request to the chaplain of Shotts prison, where he is serving life for murdering Jodi in June 2003. Mitchell’s Satanic links as a teenager were highlighted during his trial….

In The Satanic Bible, LaVey discusses how someone could be considered “fit and proper” as a human sacrifice. The book concludes: “The answer is brutally simple. Anyone who has unjustly wronged you.”….

Mitchell was just 15 when he stabbed his 14-year-old girlfriend to death in Easthouses, Midlothian.
Jodi’s mutilated body was found in woods near her home. It emerged Mitchell had scratched 666 into his arm with a compass and drew Satanic symbols and quotes on his schoolbooks…. http://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/news/crime/killer-luke-mitchell-demands-satanic-books-in-jail-1-3375463

Jodi Jones killer Luke Mitchell demands right to study Satanic textbooks in prison due to his ‘religious beliefs’ Apr 13, 2014     By Dailyrecord.co.uk

MITCHELL, who is serving life in Shotts prison, has requested a copy of The Satanic Bible, which calls for followers to create a lawless world where human sacrifice and murder are not only tolerated but encouraged.
JODI Jones’s killer Luke Mitchell has demanded the right to be given Satanic textbooks in jail because of his “religious beliefs”. Mitchell wants six books including The Devil’s Notebook and Satan Speaks, claiming it’s his human right to have access to the occult materials.

Mitchell, 25, also wants a copy of The Satanic Bible, which calls for followers to create a lawless world where there is no right or wrong and where human sacrifice and murder is not only tolerated but encouraged….

Mitchell’s Satanic links were highlighted during his trial, where he was described as “truly wicked” by judge Lord Nimmo Smith. However, he still protests his innocence. One source said: “Mitchell’s supporters have always downplayed his links to Satanism but it’s clear he has a serious interest in the subject….

Elizabeth Rudman, a criminologist with over 20 years’ experience, said: “This is extreme material and it is very interesting that he has asked for these items halfway through his sentence. I am taken aback that he is asking for these Satanic materials at this point. “My problem is that the rituals involved in these materials are really anti-social and they elicit deeds that are against the law, such as human sacrifice.

“This person was convicted for murder. My first question would be: what is he going to plan now?
“It is possible Mitchell has given up completely. On the other hand, it can also be an indication of guilt.
“He has been in prison for so long, his hope of getting an appeal has been completely quashed, so now he may be showing his true convictions.”…. http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/scottish-news/jodi-jones-killer-luke-mitchell-3407242

Priest personnel files released in California court case reveal alleged abuser in N.J., The $115,000 Question – McHugh book

August 3, 2013 Comments Off on Priest personnel files released in California court case reveal alleged abuser in N.J., The $115,000 Question – McHugh book

Priest personnel files released in California court case reveal alleged abuser in N.J.
Mark Mueller/The Star-Ledger By Mark Mueller/The Star-Ledger
August 01, 2013

A court-ordered release of personnel files involving religious-order clergy members in California has revealed the name of another New Jersey priest accused of sexual abuse.

The Rev. Joseph Di Peri, now deceased, was removed from ministry in New Jersey in 2003 after the Archdiocese of Newark learned he had been credibly accused of molesting a teenage boy in the late 1970s at Chaminade College Preparatory High School in West Hills, Calif….

“We urge New Jersey Catholic officials to come clean about proven, admitted and credibly accused child molester clerics who live or work in the state, regardless of where they are, where they molested and which Catholic entity signs their paychecks,” Clohessy added. “Secrecy around sex offenders protects sex offenders. Openness about child molesters protects children.”….

“Once again, it appears that an abusive priest was allowed to leave the East Coast under the guise of health issues to serve on the West Coast,” Hoatson said. “In short order, the priest was engaged in the sexual abuse of a minor in Los Angeles.” http://www.nj.com/news/index.ssf/2013/08/priest_personnel_files_released_in_california_court_case_reveal_alleged_abuser_in_nj.html

The $115,000 Question
July 25th, 2013

A loyal reader of this site pointed our attention to a curious entry in the tax returns filed by the False Memory Syndrome Foundation in 2005 and 2006. In 2005, the organization spent $63,500 on something identified only as “book project.” They spent $52,227 more the next year. Their 2006 tax return lists “the Sturgis Group” as “authors” of the book they are funding. (See p. 10 of this document.) But there was never a book published after this date with the FMSF or the Sturgis Group listed as the author. Indeed, there was never even an announcement in the FMSF Newsletter informing its members that a book they spent more than $100,000 on had been published. One wonders why….

The preface also acknowledges a “yearlong collaboration” whereby McHugh’s daughter Clare “helped [him] put down an accessible draft.” Dr. McHugh mentions her “devotion,” but there is no mention of what happened behind-the-scenes…. http://blogs.brown.edu/recoveredmemory/2013/07/25/the-115000-question/

Boy Scouts and Catholic Church were inclined to silence on abuse

October 25, 2012 Comments Off on Boy Scouts and Catholic Church were inclined to silence on abuse

Boy Scouts and Catholic Church were inclined to silence on abuse: James Gill
By James Gill, NOLA.com  The Times-Picayune
October 24, 2012

After Catholic priest Gilbert Gauthe was found to be a child molester in 1974, then-Lafayette Bishop Gerard Frey decided a change was in order. So the next year, Gauthe was assigned extra duties. He became chaplain of the diocesan Boy Scouts. Any pedophile would have whooped, and Gauthe took full advantage….

Louisiana always figured prominently in the scandals that engulfed both institutions nationwide. Gauthe was the first to be unmasked in the endless succession of predatory priests who enjoyed years of episcopal protection. After Gauthe pleaded guilty in 1985, and was sentenced to 20 years in the state pen, Rev. Kenneth Doyle, spokesman for the U.S. Catholic Conference in Washington, said: “We don’t want to give the impression that it’s a rampant problem for the church, because it’s not.”

Then, New Orleans journalist Jason Berry, who covered the case, wrote a book predicting years of turmoil and multimillion-dollar court judgments against the church….

In 1976, four adult Scout leaders were arrested in New Orleans for running a troop where underprivileged boys were recruited for sexual exploitation. It was the movement’s first high-profile sex scandal in America. “Louisiana always figured prominently in the scandals that engulfed both institutions nationwide.”

The Scout leaders — Raymond Woodall, Richard Stanley Halvorsen, Harry Cramer and Lewis Sialle — were all sentenced to prison in 1977. At the same time parents of Gauthe’s victims found out what he was up to, and filed complaints with diocesan officials. Frey, in what we were soon to discover was the standard response of the church throughout the country, merely moved Gauthe to another parish, where he continued his unholy ministry until he was suspended in 1983 after aggrieved parents filed a lawsuit….

He (Gauthe) had no known connection, however, with New Orleans Troop 137, which hit the national headlines while he was preying on the youth of Lafayette. What was known at the time as the “Boy Scout sex case,” netted 17 arrests, and Troop 137 was identified at the trial of its leaders as “the nucleus of a nationwide sex and pornography ring, with boys recruited into the troop sent to other states for the pleasure of men there.” Troop leaders would recruit underprivileged boys and ply them with gifts so they could be prepared for sleepovers and naked pool parties.

http://www.nola.com/opinions/index.ssf/2012/10/scouts_and_church_were_incline.html

Predators on Pedestals – America has Jerry Sandusky, Britain has Jimmy Savile, Mystery surrounds graves at boys’ reform school

October 16, 2012 Comments Off on Predators on Pedestals – America has Jerry Sandusky, Britain has Jimmy Savile, Mystery surrounds graves at boys’ reform school

Op-Ed Columnist  Predators on Pedestals  By BILL KELLER  October 14, 2012

America has Jerry Sandusky. Britain has Jimmy Savile.

Sandusky you know; the predatory Penn State football coach was sentenced last week to spend his remaining years in prison for raping boys who looked up to him. Savile you may have missed; a venerable British TV personality who died last year, he is now at the center of a posthumous scandal unspooling in London. His appetites ran mostly to adolescent girls, but otherwise the parallels are striking. In both cases, the story is not just one of individual villainy but of the failure of a trusted institution, if not a flaw in the wider culture.

Perhaps you’ve had your fill of these sordid accounts — the celebrity gropers, the pedophile priests, the fondling in the locker room shower, the witnesses who look the other way. But Savile’s case is worth mulling, if only because the institution in which his serial child abuse took place is one of the most respected media organizations in the world, a putative shrine to truth and accountability: the BBC. And in the early days of the scandal the revered broadcaster has faced the same questions of dereliction or outright cover-up that dogged Penn State and the Catholic Church when they experienced their respective outbreaks of infamy.

To appreciate Jimmy Savile’s place in English culture, imagine a combination of Dick Clark of “American Bandstand” and Jerry Lewis, maestro of the muscular dystrophy telethon. Savile was the longest-serving host of the immensely popular BBC music show “Top of the Pops,” and the star of another long-running show called “Jim’ll Fix It,” in which he pulled strings to grant the wishes of supplicants, mostly children. Like Sandusky, he buffed his reputation by throwing himself into charity work. Like Sandusky he seems to have used his philanthropy both to identify vulnerable children for his personal sport and to inoculate himself against suspicion. The good deeds helped earn Savile two knighthoods, one bestowed by the queen, the other by the pope. He was Sir Jimmy, confidant — or at least photo-op accessory — of royals, prime ministers, even Beatles….

The testimony of his accusers describes what Malcolm Gladwell calls, in a shuddersome study of Sandusky’s ilk published in The New Yorker last month, “child-molester tradecraft.” You have “the subtle early maneuvers of victim selection,” the screening out of children who object or who are supervised closely by parents, the testing, ingratiating, “grooming” and “desensitizing the target with an ever-expanding touch,” the escalation of abuse.

Gossip about Savile’s fondling of young teenagers was rife, but never rose to a level deemed newsworthy during his life. But on Oct. 3 the investigative program “Exposure,” on the rival ITV network, aired a damning documentary. It included interviews with five women who described being sexually abused as teenagers and with colleagues who witnessed compromising behavior. After that, the deluge. London police now say they are pursuing more than 300 leads, and that they believe Savile abused girls as young as 13 over the course of four decades — in his BBC dressing room, in hospitals where he was a benefactor, in the back of his white Rolls-Royce.

It turns out that the BBC’s own investigative show, “Newsnight,” had also delved into Savile’s history, but ended up killing the program last December. It would have run a few weeks before a BBC holiday tribute to the memory of Jimmy Savile….

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/10/15/opinion/keller-predators-on-pedestals.html

Esther Rantzen: ‘How I long to turn the clock back’
We were all part of a conspiracy of silence – and that’s why it is vital that Savile’s victims come forward to tell their stories

By Esther Rantzen
07 Oct 2012

As I arrived at an NSPCC conference last week, a taxi pulled up, and the driver shouted to me. “Esther!” I walked over. “Jimmy Savile was in my cab some years back, with two very young girls he said were his nieces. But they weren’t. What he got up to with them in the back of the cab was bad, very bad. I knew it was wrong. But what could I say?”

For decades, nobody said anything, at least not publicly, not officially. Everyone knew – that is, everyone in the television and pop music industries knew. The rumours swirled around him, that he sexually abused young girls. A journalist friend told me in the 1970s about a little girl with a heart defect. Jimmy had helped her to have the defect surgically corrected. A newspaper heard about his generosity and contacted the girl’s family to run the story, but the family refused to talk to them because they were sickened by what they knew he had done to her to make her “earn” the operation.

But that story, like all the others I heard, was hearsay, rumour, gossip. Many a person has been crucified unjustly by rumour. A lie, they say, goes halfway around the world before truth has got its boots on. So for decades the abuse was an open secret, and Jimmy easily rebuffed the rumours when interviewers like Louis Theroux and the psychiatrist Anthony Clare dared to put them to him….

But now the truth is out. More victims are emerging every day, telling stories of the sexual abuse by Sir Jimmy of children as young as nine, on one occasion alongside the convicted paedophile pop star Gary Glitter. They reveal that, like every practised paedophile, he targeted the most vulnerable children, including those in care. Jimmy, for instance, reportedly visited the notorious Jersey children’s home, Haut de la Garenne, several times in the Sixties and Seventies, where seven people have since been prosecuted for child abuse….

Knighted by both the Queen and the Pope, Sir Jimmy hid the private reality that he was also a prolific, predatory paedophile. All of his crimes – the multitude of attacks committed in his famous Rolls-Royce, in his caravan, in schools and children’s homes, in his dressing room and in a London taxi – remained an open secret. In spite of the fact that he flaunted his taste for underage children, police investigations failed, newspaper investigations were never published, a Newsnight film was dropped, and through it all Jimmy’s image remained intact….

But the shock of his callousness, his ruthlessness as described by these women, was so profound that I found myself in tears. I listened to the careful, factual accounts by the women, whose recollections were so vivid and detailed that it was clear they were describing scenes etched on their memories. The helplessness of the children he had preyed upon made me long to turn the clock back, to assure them it was not their fault. It was all true; I had no doubt. Without knowing it, they corroborated each other by describing similar attacks that still caused them pain and shame, even down to the sexually transmitted disease with which he had infected two of the girls. Now they have been further corroborated by the other victims coming forward every day; at the time of writing, more than 40 of them….

Why were they silent for so many years? Because abused children find it difficult to describe the crimes against them. The shame is transferred to them, the guilt rubs off, they feel defiled. They think – because they are often threatened – that nobody will believe them if they do have the courage to ask for help. And in this case they were right. As the documentary shows, Charlotte, one child who did speak up and fight back, was punished for it. Jimmy was a regular visitor to the Duncroft Approved School for Girls, near Staines in Surrey, where Charlotte was a pupil. He invited her to his caravan, told her to sit on his lap and put his hand up her jumper. When she protested, her teachers dragged her away and told her off: “Uncle Jimmy does so much good for the school.” She was taken to the isolation unit for two or three days and told to retract her allegations. “I hated it in there,” she says now. “It was a padded cell, and you were just locked in a room and left.”….

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/crime/9591322/Esther-Rantzen-How-I-long-to-turn-the-clock-back.html

Mystery surrounds graves at boys’ reform school
By Rich Phillips, CNN Mon October 15, 2012

Marianna, Florida (CNN) — This Florida panhandle town is the home of a mystery that has been lost to time.

A small cemetery buried deep into the grounds of a now-defunct boys reform school dates back to the early 1900s. Rusting white steel crosses mark the graves of 31 unidentified former students.

Former students said the deaths were at the hands of abusive administrators, but a 2009 state investigation determined there was no evidence of criminal activity connected with any of the deaths or of abusive treatment.

But the investigation did not clear up the mystery over the fate of 50 other students who died at the school and whose bodies have not been accounted for.

In the wake of that investigation, more former students — who are now senior citizens — have come forward with stories of abuse at the school, including alleged beatings, killings and the disappearance of students, during the 1940s, ’50s and ’60s….

The mystery surrounding the graves first made headlines in 2008 when Florida’s then-governor Charlie Crist ordered an investigation after a group of men, known as “the White House Boys,” came forward with stories of how they were beaten with leather straps by school administrators inside a small, white building on school property.

Robert Straley, who spent about 10 months at the school in the 1960s for allegedly stealing a car, said he was taken to the “white house” on his very first day.

“I came out of there in shock, and when they hit you, you went down a foot into the bed, and so hard, I couldn’t believe. I didn’t know what they were hitting you with,” said Straley.

Former school administrator Troy Tidwell, a one-armed man who was there at the time and who some former students accused of beating them, has said in a deposition that “spankings” took place at the school but denied anyone was ever beaten or killed.

http://www.cnn.com/2012/10/13/us/florida-graves-mystery/index.html

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