Members of press issue mea culpas on botched Bill Cosby coverage, Spain arrests Granada priests over child sex abuse
November 26, 2014 Comments Off on Members of press issue mea culpas on botched Bill Cosby coverage, Spain arrests Granada priests over child sex abuse
Members of press issue mea culpas on botched Bill Cosby coverage November 25, 2014
Some members of the press who covered Bill Cosby over the past 40 years are now issuing mea culpas, saying they failed to follow up on the many accusations leveled at the comedy legend over the years.
Bill Cosby’s official biographer Mark Whitaker says he was wrong in not addressing the numerous allegations of sexual assault leveled against the comedian. Whitaker’s admission comes on the heels of New York Times columnist David Carr taking to task a number of writers – himself included – for turning a blind eye to the claims….
Cosby, 77, has been publicly accused by at least 18 women of sexually assaulting them or attempting to sexually assault them over the past four decades. His lawyers have denied the claims and called many of the women liars and opportunists. Cosby refused to address the stories in recorded interviews with the Associated Press and National Public Radio. He told the publication Florida Today: “I know people are tired of me not saying anything, but a guy doesn’t have to answer to innuendos.”
But despite the denials, venues on Cosby’s tour are dropping like flies….
Spain arrests Granada priests over child sex abuse
24 November 2014
Police in Spain have arrested three priests and one layman on suspicion of child sex abuse, according to the country’s interior minister….
The Archdiocese of Granada suspended several priests last week after a man wrote to Pope Francis saying he was abused when he was an altar boy….
However, Spanish newspaper El Pais said all were believed to be members of the ultraconservative group known as Los Romanones….
September 26, 2014 Comments Off on Pope sacks Paraguay bishop accused of protecting abuser priest
Pope sacks Paraguay bishop accused of protecting abuser priest
Pope Francis’s latest crackdown on clerical sex abuse comes days after Vatican ordered Polish archbishop to be put on trial for allegedly abusing young boys
Livieres Plano, a member of the conservative Opus Dei movement, has been removed by Pope Francis from a Paraguayan diocese
By Nick Squires, Rome 25 Sep 2014
Pope Francis has sacked a bishop in South America who for years protected a priest accused of sexual misconduct.
The Pope, who has vowed to adopt a much tougher stance than his predecessors on priests accused of sexual abuse, forcibly removed Rogelio Ricardo Livieres Plano from his post as bishop of a diocese in Paraguay.
The bishop is accused of protecting an Argentine priest whose former superiors in the United States had described as a “serious threat to young people.”
The bishop’s removal was the result of an investigation instigated by the Vatican earlier this year.
He had refused to resign, leaving the Pope no option but to remove him in what the Vatican described in a statement as a “hard decision”….
Did Pope Francis really say 2% of Catholic clergy are pedophiles?, Rome- Pope estimates # of predator priests, A woman is raped every 90 minutes in Zimbabwe, Butler-Sloss steps down from child abuse inquiry
July 15, 2014 Comments Off on Did Pope Francis really say 2% of Catholic clergy are pedophiles?, Rome- Pope estimates # of predator priests, A woman is raped every 90 minutes in Zimbabwe, Butler-Sloss steps down from child abuse inquiry
Did Pope Francis really say 2% of Catholic clergy are pedophiles?
By Lauren Raab July 13, 2014
An interview that credits Pope Francis as saying about 2% of Roman Catholic clerics are pedophiles stirred controversy Sunday, as the Vatican sought to raise questions about the article’s accuracy and others called on the pope to take more action on the issue.
The interview by Eugenio Scalfari, published Sunday, quotes the pope as calling the rash of sex abuse scandals “a leprosy in our home” and saying the pedophiles include “priests and even bishops and cardinals,” according to a CBS News translation….
Meanwhile, the Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests, or SNAP, said the “real percentage of predator priests” is much higher than 2% and called on the pope to defrock clerics who participate in cover-ups….
At a United Nations hearing this year, the Vatican said it had defrocked 848 priests over the last decade and ordered 2,572 to “live a life of prayer and penance” because of abuse allegations. There are about 414,000 Roman Catholic priests worldwide, according to the BBC; if 2% are pedophiles, that would be more than 8,000….
Rome- Pope estimates # of predator priests
For immediate release: Sunday, July 13, 2014
Statement by Barbara Dorris of St. Louis, Outreach Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests
….Finally, “U.S. bishops have reported receiving allegations of abuse by 6,427 priests in 1950-2013, or 5.9% of the 109,694 U.S. priests active 1950-2002, according to the John Jay report. Including the 5,356 priests ordained since 2002 brings the total to 115,050, of whom 5.6% have been accused of abuse,” according to BishopAccountability.org.
Here are more specific numbers, from BishopAccountability.org:
–After the March 2009 release of audit documents by the NH AG, the names of 74 accused Manchester priests are known, or over 8.9% of the 831 diocesan priests, which extrapolates to 9,768 nationally
–Covington diocese states that 9.6% of its priests have been accused, which extrapolates to 10,531 nationally
–Over 10% of Providence RI priests have been accused, which extrapolates to over 10,969 nationally
–Richard Sipe estimates that 9% of U.S. priests have offended, which extrapolates to 9,872 priests nationally….
A woman is raped every 90 minutes in Zimbabwe – ZimStat
by Staff Reporter 13 July 2014
AT least one woman is raped every 90 minutes in the country, preliminary statistics of the first quarter of 2014 leaked from the Zimbabwe National Statistics (ZimStat) office have revealed.The data shows that about 500 women were sexually abused monthly in the first three months of the year, translating to about 16 women being raped daily.
A total of 1 524 cases were reported in the first three months of this year, up from 1 285 recorded in the same period last year.
Of the total cases recorded in the first quarter of this year, 780 are children between the ages of 11 and 16 years while 276 were children aged between five and 10 years….
National Aids Council (NAC) Gender and Workplace co-ordinator, Ms Vimbai Mdege, expressed sadness at the indication that the majority of sexual abuse victims were children under the age of 16….
“….If you look at the figures you will see that the majority of the victims of rape are children under the age of 16. Most of the rape cases are for ritual purposes….”
Butler-Sloss steps down from child abuse inquiry 14 July 2014
Retired judge Baroness Butler-Sloss has stepped down as head of a probe into child sex abuse saying she was “not the right person” for the job.
Lady Butler-Sloss has been under pressure to quit from MPs and victims concerned about her family links.
Her late brother, Sir Michael Havers, was attorney general in the 1980s….
May 5, 2014 Comments Off on Vatican to craft sex abuse protocols
Vatican to craft sex abuse protocols
May 3, 2014 VATICAN CITY (AP) – Members of Pope Francis’ sexual abuse advisory board said Saturday they will develop “clear and effective” protocols to hold bishops and other church authorities accountable if they fail to report suspected abuse or protect children from pedophile priests.Victims groups have long blasted the Vatican for refusing to sanction any bishop or superior who covered up for priests who raped and molested children. They have listed accountability as one of the key issues facing Francis and a key test for his new advisory board….
Victims groups have long cited the case of O’Malley’s predecessor in Boston, Cardinal Bernard Law, who resigned in disgrace as archbishop after the sex abuse scandal exploded publicly there in 2002. But Pope John Paul II then appointed Law to the plum assignment as archpriest of one of the Vatican’s four major basilicas in Rome. Even today, another U.S. bishop remains in office despite having been convicted of misdemeanor failure to report suspected child abuse….
The commission met on the eve of a U.N. committee meeting in Geneva in which the Vatican is expected to come under a second round of criticism for its handling of abuse. A U.N. committee monitoring implementation of a key treaty on children’s rights blasted the Holy See earlier this year, accusing it of systematically placing its own interests over those of victims by enabling priests to rape and molest tens of thousands of children through its own policies and code of silence.
It recommended the Vatican immediately remove any priest suspected or known to have abused children, open its archives on abusers and the bishops who covered up for them, and turn the cases over to law enforcement.
Pope Francis asks forgiveness for priests who sexually abused children, Pa. bill expands list of those required to report child abuse
April 12, 2014 Comments Off on Pope Francis asks forgiveness for priests who sexually abused children, Pa. bill expands list of those required to report child abuse
Pope Francis asks forgiveness for priests who sexually abused children
By Daniel Burke and Laura Smith-Spark, CNN
Fri April 11, 2014
(CNN) — Pope Francis made his strongest condemnation yet of sexual abuse by Catholic clergy on Friday, asking for forgiveness and pledging to impose penalties on “men of the church” who harm children.
“I feel compelled to personally take on all the evil which some priests — quite a few in number, obviously not compared to the number of all the priests — to personally ask for forgiveness for the damage they have done for having sexually abused children,” the Pope said in remarks quoted by Vatican Radio….
The U.S.-based Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests said it may be the first time a pope has spoken of sanctioning “complicit bishops.”
“But that is all it is: talk,” said Barbara Dorris, SNAP’s outreach director.
“We beg the world’s Catholics: Be impressed by deeds, not words. Until the Pope takes decisive action that protects kids, be skeptical and vigilant.”
The Pope’s new comments, made Friday to members of a Catholic nongovernmental organization, the International Catholic Child Bureau, represent a shift from his previous statements on sexual abuse….
Pa. bill expands list of those required to report child abuse By Oscar Gamble 04/11/14
NORRISTOWN — A bill sponsored by Rep. Todd Stephens to expand the list of professionals required to report suspected child abuse and increase penalties for those who shirk the obligation has unanimously passed the Pennsylvania Legislature and is headed to Gov. Tom Corbett’s desk.
House Bill 436, the Child Protection Act, is a companion to Senate Bill 21, sponsored by Sen. Kim Ward, R-39th Dist., which includes Stephens’ language expanding and clarifying the list of professionals required to report abuse….
The bill requires child care providers and school personnel at every educational level, religious leaders, doctors and health care professionals, social and emergency service workers, librarians, law enforcement and the lawyers and independent contractors representing all of these entities to report suspected cases of child abuse or neglect. It also imposes stiffer penalties for noncompliance.“I think the penalties will get people’s attention,” said Stephens. “In some cases, not reporting (child abuse) will be a felony … In every case, it’s in the best interest of organizations that care for children to report instances of child abuse”….
Mexican Catholic order Legion of Christ apologises to victims, Pope Francis must finally root out child abuse
February 8, 2014 Comments Off on Mexican Catholic order Legion of Christ apologises to victims, Pope Francis must finally root out child abuse
Mexican Catholic order Legion of Christ apologises to victims
6 February 2014
Pope John Paul II (right) gives his blessing to Father Maciel (left) in 2004, two years before the Mexican priest was ordered to retire
The Legion of Christ Catholic order has for the first time apologised to the victims of sexual abuse carried out by its founder, Father Marcial Maciel.
In a statement, the order condemned the “reprehensible and objectively immoral behaviour” of the Mexico-born priest.
Father Maciel led the order from its foundation in 1941 until 2006, when Pope Benedict ordered him to retire.
He abused seminarians as young as 12, and died in 2008 aged 87 without ever being convicted of his crimes.
A Vatican investigation also found out that he had fathered several children by at least two women, and used drugs.
“We want to express our deep sorrow for the abuse of minor seminarians, the immoral acts with men and women who were adults, the arbitrary use of his authority and of material goods,” said the Legion of Christ in a statement….
Father Maciel was disciplined by the Vatican in 2006. Pope Benedict ordered him to stop exercising his ministry in public and to retire to a life of prayer and penitence.
Father Maciel, who was close to the late Pope John Paul II, always denied all the allegations….
Pope Francis must finally root out child abuse
By Mary Dispenza Thu February 6, 2014
Editor’s note: Mary Dispenza, a former nun, was a plaintiff in a successful class action suit against the Los Angeles Archdiocese over child molestation claims. She is the area representative for SNAP, the Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests, in Bellevue, Washington. She is also the author of “Split: A Child, a Priest and the Catholic Church.”
(CNN) — Finally. Finally. Finally, a strong important voice in the world, the United Nations, speaks out on behalf of the rights of children and condemns the Vatican and the bishops for crimes of violence, rape and sexual abuse against children by transferring pedophile priests from parish to parish, withholding documents for prosecution and perpetuating an institutional culture of secrecy and shame….
As a survivor of rape and violence at the hands of a priest when I was a young girl, I understand that secrecy….
It has taken me more than half a lifetime to piece myself back together. I was 52 years old and still captivated by the Catholic Church when I let the buried “secret” memories emerge. His name was Father Rucker — George Neville Rucker. I must have trusted him when he asked me to crawl up on his lap as he sat watching a movie in an auditorium so long ago. He raped me while my mother was in the lunchroom nearby….
The Archdiocese of Los Angeles released 12,000 pages of files on scores of priests accused of sexually abusing children in 2013. I found out that the pastor of our parish back in 1947 suspected Father Rucker of “touching” little girls. It was the bishop who would not listen and passed Father Rucker on and on until 2002, when he was defrocked. He had become a real liability to Cardinal Roger Mahony, head of the archdiocese.
About 33 women accused him of abusing them when they were young. That’s five decades of abuse.
In 2002, he was charged with 29 counts of molesting girls. He was taken off a cruise ship on its way to Russia to face the charges; authorities thought he was trying to flee. But his case was dismissed in 2003 after a U.S. Supreme Court ruling that the charges were too old….
Vatican refuses to give UN panel full details of clerical sex abuse cases, Pope Setting Up Commission on the Sexual Abuse of Children by Priests
December 7, 2013 Comments Off on Vatican refuses to give UN panel full details of clerical sex abuse cases, Pope Setting Up Commission on the Sexual Abuse of Children by Priests
Vatican refuses to give UN panel full details of clerical sex abuse cases
Holy See angers campaigners by not disclosing information requested by UN committee on the rights of the child
Lizzy Davies in Rome
theguardian.com, Wednesday 4 December 2013
The Vatican has refused to give a United Nations panel information it requested on clerical sex abuse, in a move that it said was part of its confidentiality policy but which was criticised as “a slap in the face” for victims.
In a series of questions asked in the runup to a public hearing scheduled for January, the UN committee on the rights of the child had requested the Holy See provide details of abuse cases and specific information concerning their subsequent investigation and handling.
But, in its response, the Holy See said that although it had answered the questions in a general way, it was not its practice to disclose information on specific cases unless requested to do so by another country as part of legal proceedings.
In the 24-page document, the Holy See said it had been “deeply saddened by the scourge of sexual abuse” and regretted the involvement of some members of the Catholic clergy.
It added that it had “amended norms” regarding the suitability of candidates for the priesthood, and had taken other steps including the revision of some canon law rules “to ensure that clerics and religious are properly disciplined”.
But it did not give all the details requested by the committee in a lengthy, multi-part question on the “sexual violence against children committed by members of the clergy, brothers and nuns in numerous countries around the world”….
Pope Setting Up Commission on the Sexual Abuse of Children by Priests
By ELISABETTA POVOLEDO, ALAN COWELL and RICK GLADSTONE
Published: December 5, 2013
VATICAN CITY — In his first concrete step to address the clerical sexual-abuse problem in the Roman Catholic Church, Pope Francis will establish a commission to advise him on protecting children from pedophile priests and on how to counsel victims, the Vatican said Thursday….
Whether the new commission portends a significant change in how the Vatican deals with abusive priests and their protectors remains to be seen, experts on the church said. Yet the timing of the announcement, two days after a United Nations panel criticized the Vatican over its handling of abuse cases, suggested that the pope and his closest advisers wanted to at least be seen as tackling the issue with greater firmness.
Soon after he became pope, Francis directed the Vatican last April to act decisively on abuse cases and punish pedophile priests, in a meeting with subordinates at the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, the church’s enforcement arm. But he had said little about the sexual abuse problem since….
Michael Jackson 2005 trial, UN tells Vatican to hand over abuse details, Yeshiva University High School former students file $380 million sex abuse lawsuit, Ohio kidnappings: Watch Ariel Castro’s alleged victims break their silence to thank public
July 10, 2013 Comments Off on Michael Jackson 2005 trial, UN tells Vatican to hand over abuse details, Yeshiva University High School former students file $380 million sex abuse lawsuit, Ohio kidnappings: Watch Ariel Castro’s alleged victims break their silence to thank public
– Court document requesting to introduce “homosexual and heterosexual picture books, videos and magazines” into the 2005 Michael Jackson trial,
– UN tells Vatican to hand over details of child sex abuse cases
– Third arrest over 1980s guest house child abuse claims
– Yeshiva University High School former students file $380 million sex abuse lawsuit
– Ohio kidnappings: Watch Ariel Castro’s alleged victims break their silence to thank public
Court document requesting to introduce “homosexual and heterosexual picture books, videos and magazines” into the 2005 Michael Jackson trial, that were found at the Neverland Valley Ranch.
UN tells Vatican to hand over details of child sex abuse cases
A United Nations committee has demanded that the Vatican reveal potentially explosive details about the systematic cover-up of child sex abuse by Catholic clergy.
By Nick Squires, Rome 09 Jul 2013
Campaigners have called on Pope Francis, who was elected in March, to make tackling the issue of sexually abusive priests an urgent priority of his papacy.
The UN’s Committee on the Rights of the Child released its demands for information from the Holy See on Tuesday.
The committee said that “in the light of the recognition by the Holy See of sexual violence against children committed by members of the clergy, brothers and nuns in numerous countries around the world, and given the scale of the abuses”, the Vatican should provide detailed information on all cases of child sexual abuse committed by clergy.
The Vatican was told to show whether it had implemented measures “to ensure that no member of the clergy currently accused of sexual abuse be allowed to remain in contact with children,” amid claims from around the world that bishops often moved abusive priests from one parish to another.
The UN committee demanded to know about specific cases in which bishops or other Catholic leaders had failed to report suspected abuse to the police.
Third arrest over 1980s guest house child abuse claims
Last updated Tue 9 Jul 2013
Detectives investigating claims of historical child abuse at a guest house in the 1980s have made a third arrest, Scotland Yard said.
A 69-year-old man was held in west London on suspicion of possessing indecent images of children and has been released on bail until September….
Judge who gave pervert Stuart Hall just 15 months was forced to quit after being caught visiting a gay brothel
Judge Anthony Russell QC criticised for ‘unduly lenient’ sentence
He resigned in 1996 in wake of gay brothel scandal, it emerges
Alleged to have entered ‘dark room’ with doctor and hospital porter
Later reinstated and rose up the ranks to become a senior judge
By Jaya Narain 24 June 2013
A judge who provoked outrage by jailing Stuart Hall for just 15 months for child sex offences once quit his post after being caught in a gay brothel.
Anthony Russell’s legal career looked to be over when he was forced to admit visiting the male-only sauna.
He was said to have gone into a ‘dark room’ inside the club with a leading doctor and a hospital porter.
Following a ‘sting’ by a Sunday newspaper in 1996, he resigned as part-time recorder of Bolton and gave up his position as the top lawyer for the Inland Revenue.
Five years later he was reinstated, however, and has since gone on to become a senior judge – the role in which he handed Hall his jail sentence last week.
Hall had admitted indecently assaulting 13 girls between 1967 and 1986, the youngest being just nine years old.
Yeshiva University High School former students file $380 million sex abuse lawsuit
The school ‘was allowing known sexual predators to roam the school at will seeking other victims,’ says attorney Kevin Mulhearn, who filed the suit on behalf of the 19 plaintiffs.
By Michael O’keeffe / NEW YORK DAILY NEWS
Monday, July 8, 2013
Chancellor of Yeshiva University Rabbi Norman Lamm announced his retirement on Monday, July 1, 2013, Lamm said he was wrong in the way he handled allegations of sexual abuse at the university’s high school decades ago. Lamm is stepping down after decades at the university amid an ongoing investigation into accusations of abuse by alumni.
Nineteen former students at Yeshiva University High School have filed a bombshell $380 million lawsuit against the prestigious Jewish institution claiming horrific acts of sexual abuse that went unchecked for two decades at the Manhattan school.
“Yeshiva University High School held itself out as an exemplary Jewish secondary school when in fact it was allowing known sexual predators to roam the school at will seeking other victims,” said attorney Kevin Mulhearn, who filed the suit on behalf of the 19 plaintiffs. “Childhood sexual abuse in the Orthodox Jewish community can no longer be condoned and excused.”
One victim claims administrators ignored his protests when he told them a Judaic studies teacher sodomized him with a toothbrush. Other victims — the children of Holocaust survivors — say a former principal persuaded them not to tell their parents after he sexually assaulted them because their mothers and fathers had already suffered through so much….
Ohio kidnappings: Watch Ariel Castro’s alleged victims break their silence to thank public
9 Jul 2013 By Chris Bucktin
They spoke out in a video, saying the encouragement of family, friends and the public has enabled them to restart their lives
The brave victims of the Ohio kidnappings have revealed how they are restarting their lives after their ordeal in the house of horror.
In a moving video released today, Amanda Berry, 27, Gina DeJesus, 23, and Michelle Knight, 32, flashed big smiles as they spoke for the first time since being rescued.
Former bus driver Ariel Castro, 52, has been charged with 329 offences including multiple counts of kidnap, torture and rape….
Pope Francis was often quiet on Argentine sex abuse cases as archbishop, – Nightline: When To Believe A Child’s Word, Missing dogs, ritualistic killing confound Idaho officials
March 22, 2013 Comments Off on Pope Francis was often quiet on Argentine sex abuse cases as archbishop, – Nightline: When To Believe A Child’s Word, Missing dogs, ritualistic killing confound Idaho officials
Pope Francis was often quiet on Argentine sex abuse cases as archbishop By Nick Miroff, March 18, 2013
HURLINGHAM, Argentina — Father Julio Cesar Grassi was a celebrity in the Archdiocese of Buenos Aires. The young, dynamic, media-savvy priest networked with wealthy Argentines to fund an array of schools, orphanages and job training programs for poor and abandoned youths, winning praise from Argentine politicians and his superior, Archbishop Jorge Mario Bergoglio.
Grassi called his foundation Felices los Niños, “Happy Children.”
Today, Grassi is a convicted sex offender who remains free on a conditional release after being sentenced to 15 years in prison in 2009 for molesting a prepubescent boy in his care.
Yet in the years after Grassi’s conviction, Bergoglio — now Pope Francis — has declined to meet with the victim of the priest’s crimes or the victims of other predations by clergy under his leadership. He did not offer personal apologies or financial restitution, even in cases in which the crimes were denounced by other members of the church and the offending priests were sent to jail….
There is no evidence that Bergoglio played a role in covering up abuse cases. Several prominent rights groups in Argentina say the archbishop went out of his way in recent years to stand with secular organizations against crimes such as sex trafficking and child prostitution. They say that Bergoglio’s resolve strengthened as new cases of molestation emerged in the archdiocese and that he eventually instructed bishops to immediately report all abuse allegations to police.
In September, after an Argentine priest from a rural area was convicted of abusing dozens of boys between 1984 and 1992, the archbishop’s office released a statement saying the case had “reaffirmed our profound shame and the immense pain that result from the grave mistakes committed by someone who should be setting the moral example.”
But during most of the 14 years that Bergoglio served as archbishop of Buenos Aires, rights advocates say, he did not take decisive action to protect children or act swiftly when molestation charges surfaced; nor did he extend apologies to the victims of abusive priests after their misconduct came to light….
Nightline: When To Believe A Child’s Word
Nightline – November 14, 1996
TURNING POINT: When Children Accuse – Who To Believe
Byline: Ted Koppel and Erin Haynes
ABC-Nightline – November 14, 1996
WHEN CHILDREN ACCUSE: WHO TO BELIEVE Child sex abuse is a very serious problem.
In 1994 alone 140,000 new cases were investigated and found to be real. But are innocent people being sentenced for crimes they never committed because of the testimony of the young?
Doubt over the testimony of children in sexual abuse cases has made it harder to try accused child molesters, sometimes with deadly consequences, but authorities say children do tell the truth in most cases.
TED KOPPEL: [voice-over] This week, another tragedy.
1st RESPONDENT: I don’t understand this. They- they knew. Why did they let him come into this neighborhood? Or in any other neighborhood?
TED KOPPEL: [voice-over] A convicted child molester avoids prison because there is doubt over the testimony of a child…..
STEPHEN CECI, Psychologist, Cornell University: Not only do I believe children can be reliable in sexual abuse cases, I believe the vast majority of them are reliable in those cases.
ERIN HAYES: [voice-over] But Ceci says what is missing from many accounts of his work is that it is fairly difficult to convince children to make up even the most harmless stories.
STEPHEN CECI: Because in our studies we work at it very hard….
ERIN HAYES: In fact, in his studies, most of the children ultimately do not give in to interviewers’ suggestions, and while many of the interviews are about more serious subjects, medical exams, for example, they are not about sex abuse, and many in the child protection field are troubled that Ceci’s research is being applied to sex abuse cases….
STEPHEN CECI: Maybe 1 percent, 5 percent, 10 percent. I suspect it’s nowhere near the majority. My hunch is the majority of interviews done with kids by front-line workers, child protective service, law enforcement, therapists, pediatricians, are well-done….
ERIN HAYES: [voice-over] But his critics point out Underwager uses his own standards for determining what is repeated and leading. For instance, he has said that interviewers’ questions like this one, “Okay … I don’t want you to say anything you can’t remember for sure,” could be considered leading. And most of the tapes he reviews come to him from defense attorneys, for whom he consults. When he testifies for them, he says, he is paid $2,500 a day. Underwager admits he has no way to known if the children’s accounts of abuse in the cases he reviews are actually false. [interviewing] How do you know, in each of these cases, that the abuse did not happen?
RALPH UNDERWAGER: I don’t. That’s not my function. That’s the function of the justice system.
ROB PARRISH: If that’s the case, then there’s no reason for him to be expressing an opinion in the justice system, any more than any of the rest of us. I mean, you could call anybody in that circumstance to say, “I’ve viewed the tape and I think it’s a bad interview, so therefore I think this child’s probably not telling the truth.”
ERIN HAYES: [voice-over] At least 10 courts have disallowed Underwager’s testimony. One ruled he “…did not have bone fide qualifications…” as a researcher. Another said his work “…was not scientifically reliable…” Underwager does continue to testify, which concerns many of his critics, who say is expertise is colored by what they see as a sympathetic view toward pedophiles. In a Dutch publication [Paidika] three years ago, Underwager said, “Paedophiles need to become more positive and make the claim that paedophilia is an acceptable expression of God’s will for love and will among human beings.” Underwager says he has always believed sex between adults and children is harmful, but says to help treat pedophiles, they must first be encouraged to openly proclaim their sexuality….
MARK ELLIS, National Center for Prosecution of Child Abuse: His methods and theories are not accepted by others in his field, and have been subject to a great deal of criticism by others in his field.
ERIN HAYES: [voice-over] Prosecutors are also critical of Dr. Gardner, who not only testifies, but publishes and markets his own books on child sex abuse, books often quoted in court cases.
ATTORNEY: [law firm videotape] Now, I want to talk to you about the most common cause of false accusations.
ERIN HAYES: [voice-over] In this videotape produced by a law firm, an attorney cites from Dr. Gardner’s research Gardner’s conclusion that false allegations of child sex abuse are commonplace in custody disputes.
ATTORNEY: [law firm videotape] This phenomena [sic] has been examined in research and it’s now been given the name “parental alienation syndrome.”
ERIN HAYES: [voice-over] That disorder, however, cannot be found in the standard manual of psychiatric diagnoses. It is a term Dr. Gardner coined himself, based mainly on his own experience as a psychiatrist. But the largest study done on the subject to date found that false allegations of child sexual abuse rarely surface in custody disputes [“…less than 2% of cases involved an allegation of sexual abuse.” Dr. Gardner declined a videotaped interview for this report, but he sells tapes of his own, as well, in which he describes his criteria to help determine whether a child’s allegation of sexual abuse is true or false. Among his criteria?
Dr. RICHARD GARDNER: [videotape] If it sounds incredible, it’s probably not true. In extreme cases, children who are sexually abused become like little street-smart sluts. I believe that children who are false accusers are going to have a higher incidence of reading mystery stories.
ERIN HAYES: [voice-over] Dr. Gardner concedes no one has scientifically tested his criteria, not even he.
ROB PARRISH: Those tests are not based on scientific reality. They’re not verified, they’re not validated in any way.
Missing dogs, ritualistic killing confound Idaho officials
Reuters March 21, 2013 By Laura Zuckerman
SALMON, Idaho, March 21 (Reuters) – The mysterious disappearance of about 30 dogs in southern Idaho has baffled animal control officials and raised concerns among dog lovers after a German shepherd was found with its head crushed in a suspected ritual killing.
The missing canines range widely in size, breed and age.
“The dogs seem to vanish into thin air,” said Debbie Blackwood, director of the animal shelter in Twin Falls, Idaho.
Officials say some 30 dogs have gone missing in recent months in Twin Falls and nearby communities in an agricultural region in south-central Idaho known as the Magic Valley….
The dog, found in an area known as the Devil’s Corral in neighboring Jerome County, appeared to have suffered a “ritualistic execution” ….