More than half had priest accused of abuse, Belgian Catholic abuse legal row

October 13, 2010 Comments Off on More than half had priest accused of abuse, Belgian Catholic abuse legal row

Shanley recovered memory case
http://ritualabuse.us/research/memory-fms/shanley-recovered-memory-case/

Study: More than half of parishes had priest accused of abuse
October 11, 2010 More than half of Chicago’s Roman Catholic parishes have had a priest accused of sexually abusing a child working there at some point, according to a study released today that was quickly questioned by the Chicago Archdiocese.
In some cases, multiple priests accused of misconduct worked at the same church, according to the study, conducted by reform groups Voice of the Faithful, African American Advocates for Victims of Clergy Sexual Abuse and the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests. “In almost 60 percent of the parishes, an accused predator worked there,” said Barbara Blaine, president of SNAP. For example, from 1980 to 1990, 57.7% of Chicago parishes had an accused priest working there, said Bob Kopp, one of the study’s researchers and vice president of Chicagoland Voice of the Faithful. Other decades examined in the study had similar percentages of affected parishes, he said. She is calling for victims to speak up. “Silence protects predators.”….”From the description of what we have heard, it appears that the analysis and conclusions are questionable,” said Colleen Dolan of the archdiocese in an e-mailed statement. “The priests referred to in the … report have all been removed and are not in ministry in the Archdiocese of Chicago.”
http://www.chicagobreakingnews.com/2010/10/roman-catholic-church-priest-sex-abuse-children-study.html

New twist in Belgian Catholic abuse legal row
AFP, Oct 12, 2010 BRUSSELS: Belgium’s highest court ordered magistrates on Tuesday to re-examine evidence seized by police relating to decades of child abuse and alleged Roman Catholic Church cover-ups. The court overturned two previous decisions by lower courts that rendered inadmissible evidence taken from church headquarters, the home of a former archbishop and a church-backed commission investigating sex crimes perpetrated by priests. Responding to lawyers acting for alleged victims who lodged appeals, the judges said the lower courts were wrong not to hear civil parties and therefore magistrates should look again at the evidence in a new light. It means that truckloads of material gathered by police in spectacular raids in June that drew the ire of Pope Benedict XVI himself could potentially be used to relaunch state prosecutions for abuse.
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/europe/New-twist-in-Belgian-Catholic-abuse-legal-row/articleshow/6736989.cms 

Child Sex Abuse Bill Dies, Archbishop Caught in Catholic Abuse Scandal

June 4, 2010 § Leave a comment

Shanley clergy abuse recovered memory case

For 5th Year, Child Sex Abuse Bill Dies in Legislature By PAUL VITELLO June 2, 2010
For four years, advocates for sexually abused children had fought a battle in the New York Legislature to open a legal window that would allow victims to file lawsuits against predators long after the statute of limitations had expired.

Though the bill died each year, it passed in the Assembly three timesand earned the support of two governors. And the renewed attention to sexual abuse in the Roman Catholic Church augured well for the cause this year….Dennis Poust, the communications director of the New York State Catholic Conference, said the vote represented an emerging consensus that time limits on legal liability were an important civil rights protection.

The conference is the policy arm of the state’s Catholic bishops, the bill’s most formidable opponents….Since it was first introduced in the 2006-7 session, the Child Victims Act has been fervently opposed by the Catholic Church and several Orthodox Jewish groups, which saw potentially devastating financial implications in opening an opportunity for victims, regardless of age, to bring lawsuits for sexual abuse suffered in
childhood. http://www.nytimes.com/2010/06/03/nyregion/03abuse.html

German Archbishop Caught up in Catholic Abuse Scandal By Tristana Moore / Berlin  Jun. 03, 2010 Already reeling from a series of sexual abuse accusations, Germany’s Catholic Church has taken another hit, and this time the scandal has reached into the upper echelons of the organization. On Monday, German prosecutors confirmed that they’ve launched a preliminary criminal investigation into allegations that the head of Germany’s Catholic Church, Archbishop Robert Zollitsch, was an accessory to the sexual assault of children.

The case threatens to further deepen a crisis that has already tainted the image of the Catholic Church in Germany, not least because, as head of the German Bishops’ Conference, Zollitsch is tasked with dealing with the sex abuse scandal. Prosecutors say that in 1987, Zollitsch re-appointed a priest who was facing abuse allegations to work in a monastery in Birnau, in southern Germany by Lake Constance. “According to the complaint filed by a man at the end of May, Archbishop Zollitsch assigned further work to a priest … despite knowing that this priest had sexually abused children in the past,” Wolfgang Maier, the senior public prosecutor in the south German city of Freiburg, tells TIME.
http://www.time.com/time/world/article/0,8599,1993737,00.html?artId=1993737

The Trial of Benedict XVI, Germany: 205 claims of abuse at Jesuit schools

May 28, 2010 § Leave a comment

Shanley recovered memory case
http://ritualabuse.us/research/memory-fms/shanley-recovered-memory-case/

The Trial of Benedict XVI By Jeff Israely and Howard Chua-Eoan Thursday, May. 27, 2010
How do you atone for something terrible, like the Inquisition?….When his turn came, Ratzinger, the church’s premier theologian, intoned a short prayer that said “that even men of the church, in the name of faith and morals, have sometimes used methods not in keeping with the Gospel in the solemn duty of defending the truth.”….

“He grabbed me, tickling and wrestling like I did with my dad, and I thought at first it was fun,” McDaid, who grew up in Salem, Mass., says of a parish priest. “But then something changed … He started grabbing my genitals. I felt him rubbing against me from behind … I was so scared. I knew this was so wrong. I looked out the window. I started praying.” That would happen again and again over three years. McDaid’s devout mother was delighted whenever the priest arrived to pick up her son, just 11 when the abuse started, to join other boys on trips to the beach. But, recalls McDaid, now 54, “the last boy out of the car was the one who would get molested.” He finally spoke to his dad, who then took him to a priest from the next town to report what had happened. “We waited for months. Then there was a rotation of priests. He left, but they made it look like a natural progression. They celebrated him with cake and ice cream.” The boy was left in silence and with his secret shame. The priest, Father Joseph Birmingham, went on to abuse boys in three other parishes in the Boston area before he died in 1989. http://www.time.com/time/world/article/0,8599,1992171,00.html

Germany: 205 claims of abuse at Jesuit schools
AP Thu May 27, 2010 MUNICH – A special investigator says in her final report that at least 205 former students claim to have been sexually or otherwise abused in Jesuit schools in Germany. Investigator Ursula Raue said Thursday she thinks the number is even higher, as “we cannot expect to have heard everything yet.” She said 46 Jesuits and non-clerical staff at the schools have been accused of abuse or of knowing of such crimes without acting.
http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20100527/ap_on_re_eu/eu_germany_church_abuse

also at
http://www.wral.com/news/national_world/world/story/7677958/

Shanley case Leadership Council Amicus Brief on recovered memory

January 22, 2010 § Leave a comment

Appellant ON APPEAL FROM A JUDGMENT OF THE SUPERIOR COURT BRIEF OF THE COMMONWEALTH OF MASSACHUSETTS SUPREME JUDICIAL COURT SJC NO. 10382 AC NO. 2007-P-0886
COMMONWEALTH OF MASSACHUSETTS, Appellee v. PAUL SHANLEY,  LEADERSHIP COUNCIL AS AMICUS CURIAE

excerpts

This Brief explains why Appellant’s position is wholly inaccurate regarding scientific acceptance of dissociative memory loss and why  his Court’s determination that testimony on dissociative memory loss and recovery, from an otherwise qualified expert, is admissible without a Lanigan hearing, is correct. See Commonwealth v. Frangipane, 433 Mass. 527, 537-538 (2001)….

This brief provides important updated scientific and legal support further strengthening the Leadership Council’s position in that case. It should also be pointed out that the FMSF brief heavily relies on ad hominem arguments and false accusations of dishonesty and intentional misrepresentation….

That the brain can avoid conscious recall of traumatic information has long been recognized by the American Psychiatric Association and the professional mental health community. Indeed, it is explicitly described as a phenomenon in the 1994 Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 4th Edition, the main diagnostic manual used by psychiatrists and psychologists….

The term “dissociative amnesia” appears as follows in section 300.12 of the DSM-IV: Dissociative amnesia is characterized by an inability to recall important personal information, usually of a traumatic or stressful nature, that is too extensive to be explained by ordinary forgetfulness. This definition, alone, demonstrates that the concept of recovered memory is generally accepted in the relevant scientific community….

Although some argue that inclusion of a diagnosis in the DSM-IV is not evidence of its scientific validity, the development of the manual was carefully planned and was based on rigorous scientific standards….

The DSM further notes that “[t]he reported duration of the events for which there is amnesia may be minutes to years. . . . Some individuals with chronic amnesia may gradually begin to recall dissociated memories.”….

Dissociative amnesia is also recognized by the World Health
Organization in their inclusion of this disorder in the International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems 10th Revision (ICD-10, 2007). F44.0 Dissociative amnesia

The main feature is loss of memory, usually of important recent events, that is not due to organic mental disorder, and is too great to be explained by ordinary forgetfulness or fatigue. The amnesia is usually centred on traumatic events, such as accidents or  unexpected bereavements, and is usually partial and selective.

The ICD-10 is the international standard diagnostic classification for all general epidemiological, many health management purposes, and clinical use….

Delayed recall of abuse memories was also recognized in the American Psychological Association’s Final Report from the Working Group on Investigation of Memories of Childhood Abuse….

FMSF board member Elizabeth Loftus participated in the working group. As the judge in a past case noted:
. . . even Dr. Loftus conceded upon cross-examination that the APA policy which she helped to create notes that “it is possible for memories of abuse that have been forgotten for a long time to be remembered . . .” The language of the APA report indicates that the challenge to recovered memories which is included therein concerns
the mechanism by which the delayed recall occurs, rather than the fact of its occurrence . . . Furthermore, Dr. Loftus acknowledged that dissociation from a traumatic event is a recognized phenomenon….

The most thoughtful report on recovered memories was issued by the British Psychological Society. British Psychological Society, Report by the Working Group on Recovered Memories (1995). After an investigation of the effect of trauma on memory, the Society concluded that “forgetting of certain kinds of trauma is often reported” for very different kinds of trauma ranging from war trauma to childhood sexual abuse. The report further concluded that the available evidence suggests that between one third and two thirds of abuse victims have periods of time when they “totally or partially forgot the abuse.”….

In summary, there is ample evidence that traumatic memory loss and recovery is accepted by the major scientific organizations representing mental health practitioners. This wealth of documentation and professional acknowledgment contrasts sharply with that for so called “false memory syndrome,” which, despite years of attention in the media, has failed to be supported by research and is not recognized as a valid diagnostic entity by any national or international health organization. Thus, those who argue against the mind’s ability to dissociate and later recover memories are in the minority….

In summary, not only is there is ample evidence that traumatic amnesia and recovery of memories is accepted by major scientific organizations, there is also strong support for the conclusion that dissociative amnesia is generally accepted among mental health practitioners. Thus evidence regarding traumatic amnesia and/or recovered memory is reliable and admissible in judicial proceedings….

It is notable that every single one of the studies specifically addressing the issue of substantial forgetting of childhood sexual abuse, researchers found that some sub-group within the sample reported either full or partial substantial forgetting for the childhood sexual abuse. Moreover, in Dr. Loftus’ own study of memories of sexual abuse, designed specifically to eliminate some of the flaws she identified in previous studies, 12% claimed to remember parts but not all of the abuse, while 19% claimed that they forgot the abuse for a period of time, and later the memory returned. Loftus, E. F., et al., Memories of Childhood Sexual Abuse: Remembering and Repressing 18 Psychol. of Women Q. 67 (1994)….

see comments by FMSF advisory board member Hollida Wakefield in a journal that advocates for pedophiles. Wakefield, Interview: Hollida Wakefield and Ralph Underwager, 3 Paidika: J. Paedophilia 12 (1993) (“It would be nice if someone could get some kind of big research grant to do a longitudinal study of let’s say, a hundred twelveyear-old boys in relationships with loving paedophiles”)….
Researchers are also beginning to study dissociative amnesia with sophisticated neuroimaging equipment. A recent study shows persuasive evidence that dissociative amnesia is associated with an altered pattern of neural activity which reverses with memory recovery. Kikuchi, H., Fujii, T., Abe, N., et al., Memory Repression: Brain Mechanisms Underlying Dissociative Amnesia, J Cogn Neurosci. (March 20, 2009) [Epub ahead of print]….

The researchers concluded, “Our findings provide direct evidence that memory repression in dissociative amnesia is associated with an altered pattern of neural activity, and they suggest the possibility that the pFC has an important role in inhibiting the activity of the hippocampus in memory repression.” Id. This study is particularly important as it provides significant biological proof of the existence of dissociative amnesia, thereby taking the debate out of the realm of pure psychological theory….
In summary, numerous studies looking at whether the brain can suffer dissociative memory loss regarding childhood sexual abuse have found that some sub-group within the sample reported either full or partial substantial forgetting for the events. No study that has specifically examined for evidence of memory loss in traumatized population samples has failed to sustain this finding, which has been confirmed by neuroimaging research and laboratory studies that show how people are able to suppress other types of unwanted information from entering their conscious mind. Simply put, the science is clear and overwhelming that dissociative amnesia is a recognized reaction to childhood sexual abuse and other traumas….

Research Indicates that Recovered Memories and Continuous Memories are of Equal Accuracy
The reliability of the information recalled after a period of forgetting has been documented in a number of carefully performed studies. These studies have found that, when subjected to independent corroboration, continuous memories and spontaneously recovered memories (like those recovered by the plaintiff in the current case) are of similar accuracy….

Even Elizabeth Loftus, outspoken advocate for defendants in cases involving traumatic memories, has opined that the Williams study validates the experience of child sexual abuse victims who report an inability to recall memories of the abuse until years after the abuse has ended. Bass, A., Study Finds Traumatic Memories Can Be Recovered, The Boston Globe (January 26, 1995)….

In another study, Elke Geraerts, a postdoctoral fellow at Harvard University, examined the validity of recovered memories by attempting to corroborate the memories through outside sources. Geraerts, E., Schooler, J.W., Merckelbach, H., et al., The Reality of Recovered Memories: Corroborating Continuous and Discontinuous Memories of Childhood Sexual Abuse, Psychological Science 564-568 (2007)….The researchers concluded that abuse memories that are spontaneously recovered may indeed be just as accurate as memories that have persisted since the time the incident took place….
Moreover, and contrary to claims that recovered memories are primarily the result of suggestive psychotherapy, most recovery of traumatic memories have been found to occur outside of therapy. In Wilsnack, S. C., et al.’s study of over 700 women, less than 2% of women with delayed recall reported remembering the abuse with the help of a therapist or other professional person. The vast majority of memories were recovered spontaneously in other contexts….

For example, after reviewing the literature, cognitive psychologists Lindsay and Read concluded: In our reading, scientific evidence has clear implications . . . . there are few grounds to doubt spontaneously recovered memories of common forms of CSA or recovered memories of details of never-forgotten abuse. Lindsay, D. S., & Read, J. D., “Memory Work” and Recovered Memories of Childhood
Sexual Abuse: Scientific Evidence and Public, Professional and Personal Issues, 1 Psychol., Public Policy & L. 846, 894 (1995)….
.
Testimony based on dissociative amnesia has gained widespread acceptance in courts across the United States. Many state and federal courts have addressed the reliability of delayed memory and related issues involving the statute of limitations. The majority of reported cases directly addressing this issue recognize the existence of the phenomenon of dissociative/traumatic amnesia and the related experience of delayed recovery of traumatic memories.
http://www.leadershipcouncil.org/docs/ShanleyBrief.pdf

Shanley recovered memory case Mass. Court Denies Ex-Priest’s Bid for New Trial

January 16, 2010 § Leave a comment

Mass. Court Denies Ex-Priest’s Bid for New Trial 1/15/10 BOSTON (AP) The victim, now in his 30s, claimed Shanley raped him repeatedly when he was a child attending catechism classes at a church in Newton. He said he repressed memory of the abuse for two decades until he saw media coverage of the clergy scandal in 2002.
The Supreme Judicial Court agreed with a Superior Court judge who ruled earlier that repressed memory theory, or ”dissociative amnesia,” is controversial, but generally accepted in the relevant scientific community. The high court said the theory is supported by ”a wide collection of clinical observations and a survey of academic  literature.”….

”Repressed memories of abuse is a legitimate phenomenon and provided a valid basis for the jury to find that the victim, a child at the time of the assaults, repressed memories of the years of abuse he suffered at the hands of Paul Shanley, someone who was in a significant position of authority and trust,” Leone said in a statement….During Shanley’s trial, the victim tearfully described how the popular priest used to pull him out of classes and rape him, beginning when he was just 6 years old and continuing until he was 12.

Shanley, now 78, was known in the 1960s and 1970s as a ”street priest” who reached out to Boston’s troubled youth. Internal records showed that church officials were aware of sexual abuse complaints against him as early as 1967. The clergy sex abuse crisis erupted in Boston in 2002 after church records were made public showing that church officials had reports of priests molesting children, but kept the complaints secret and shuffled some priests from parish to parish rather than remove them. The crisis, which led to the resignation of Boston Cardinal Bernard Law, spread as similar sexual abuse complaints were uncovered in dioceses across the country.
http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/2010/01/15/us/AP-US-Priest-Abuse-Memories.html

describes crimes
COMMONWEALTH vs. PAUL SHANLEY DOCKET SJC-10382 Dates: September 10, 2009 – January 15, 2010

CORDY, J. On February 7, 2005, Paul Shanley was convicted of sexual abuse of a child: two indictments charging rape, in violation of G. L. c. 265, § 23; and two indictments charging indecent assault and battery on a person under the age of fourteen years, in violation of G. L. c. 265, § 13B. The abuse occurred between 1983 and 1989 when the victim was attending Confraternity of Christian Doctrine (CCD) classes at the church where the defendant served as a Catholic priest. The victim testified that he did not remember being abused by the defendant until nearly twenty years later, when he learned that other individuals had publicly made allegations that the defendant had sexually abused them when they were children. The victim’s testimony about what he remembered of that abuse constituted the core of the evidence against the defendant at trial….
Setting aside the victim’s testimony regarding the alleged sexual abuse, and the testimony of the Commonwealth’s expert, the jury could have found the following facts. The defendant was a priest at St. Jean’s Church in Newton during the years when the victim was enrolled in CCD classes there. He would often check on the children while they were in their CCD classes on Sundays. Children ranging from the ages of six to fourteen, including the victim, attended these classes.

The victim was born on September 9, 1977, and grew up in Newton with two siblings. His parents separated when he was four years of age and, after a short stay with his mother, he lived primarily with his father in his paternal grandmother’s house. The victim attended CCD classes with the same group of children at St. Jean’s Church from first grade (in 1983) until he reached eighth grade. During the years the victim attended CCD classes, some of the children became quite boisterous and periodically were required to leave the classroom. The victim and two of his friends in particular were disciplined often, both in the lower grades and when they were in fourth or fifth grade. On occasion, the defendant admonished those who were required to leave the classroom for misbehavior, and the victim was observed leaving the classroom with the defendant on several occasions….

The defendant began sexually abusing him when he was approximately six years of age and first began attending CCD classes. The defendant would take the victim out of his CCD class, bring him to the bathroom in the basement, unzip the victim’s pants watch him urinate, and then touch the victim’s penis with his hand and mouth.

The defendant also sexually assaulted the victim in the pews of the church after the victim put pamphlets in the pews for the upcoming Mass. He would do so by sitting next to the victim, putting his right arm around the victim, touching the victim’s penis through his clothes, and grabbing the victim’s hand and putting it on his own penis over his clothing. The defendant would also bring the victim into the confessional room which was located “off the side of the pews,” where the defendant would undress them both and place his finger in the victim’s anus….

The abuse of the victim continued until the defendant left the Newton church in 1990 when the victim was approximately thirteen years of age. The defendant told the victim that no one would ever believe him if he disclosed the abuse….

In describing how dissociative amnesia works, Dr. Chu testified that it is possible for a person to forget something and remember it later. Dr. Chu observed the phenomenon in his own clinical practice with adults who had been traumatized as children and explained that while it was not common in that population, it was “not at all rare.” He analogized dissociative amnesia to a type of forgetting, which “leads to people having really pervasive amnesia for not only [traumatic] events themselves, but [also] sometimes for neutral events or even good events.” He explained that persons who have experienced repeated traumatization suffer from dissociative amnesia more often than those who experience a single traumatic event.

He went on to testify that when a person remembers “so- called forgotten memories,” it is usually the result of a “trigger of some kind” which reminds that person of the traumatic experience.(10) While there was no typical pattern for the subsequent reaction of a traumatized person once there has been a trigger, the person may experience memory flashes or “body sensations.” More specifically, a person might experience physical sensations that mirror the sensations he or she incurred from the trauma itself (for example, genital pain where a person had suffered sexual abuse); or have a subsequent reaction to a trigger, become overwhelmed by the sudden onset of traumatic memories and experience “people panic,” that is, agitation, crying, and increased adrenaline….

Dr. Chu concluded by estimating that dissociative amnesia occurs in approximately twenty per cent of the seriously traumatized population….

Dr. Brown testified that based on his clinical experience, his review of thousands of studies regarding various aspects of memory, and his analysis of eighty-five studies focused on amnesia in childhood sexual abuse cases, many of which were subject to peer review, it was his opinion that dissociative amnesia exists for a clinically significant minority of traumatized individuals, including children subjected to sexual abuse. He also testified about the evolution of the use of dissociative amnesia as a diagnosis in the DSM, which has been revised several times. He opined that this diagnosis is generally accepted in the field and cited six surveys of psychology professionals, including psychiatrists, psychologists, social workers and clinicians working with war veterans to that effect. According to those surveys (taken collectively), eighty- nine per cent of those surveyed accepted the validity or possible validity of dissociative amnesia….
The judge denied the defendant’s motion to exclude expert testimony on dissociative amnesia and recovered memory, concluding that the diagnosis and theories behind it were generally accepted in the relevant scientific community.  In doing so, the judge recognized the significance of its listing as a diagnosis in DSM-IV, and credited the testimony of Dr. Brown that “clinically significant minorities of [victims of child sexual abuse] experience amnesia,” testimony that was buttressed by the studies cited to and relied on by Dr. Brown which “reflect[ed] a broad-based acceptance of dissociative amnesia and recovery.”….

In her closing, the prosecutor stated:
“[The victim] is a twenty-seven year old man. He’s recently married. He has a job that he loves . . . . He has half a million dollars in his pocket. So why, ladies and gentlemen, did he come in here and tell you what happened to him? Why? What does your common sense tell you?

“You saw him on that stand for almost 14 hours day after day, hour after hour, he willed himself through that testimony. You saw it. What does your common sense tell you?
“He came in here and he told you what happened because that man, that defendant, that priest, raped him and molested him when he was a little boy over and over again. The defendant would have you believe it is all a lie. It’s for the money; that people don’t forget about things that happen to them and then later remember them. . . .

“Was it all a lie? Was it made up? Did [the victim] come in here and just lie about it? Was it for the money? He has the money. He got the money over nine months ago. No strings attached. What did he get from coming in here? The opportunity to be on the stand? He sustained long, painful questioning, and what did he get from it?
http://www.socialaw.com/slip.htm?cid=19624&sid=120

Cover up: Documents: Archdiocese knew priest was a rapist – by Tom Mashberg and Robin Washington – 4/9/02 Boston Herald
http://web.archive.org/web/20020602180710/http://www2.bostonherald.com/news/local_regional/shan04092002.htm

Paul Shanley – Summary of Case
http://www.projecttruth2.com/Paul%20Richard%20Shanley.htm

Websites citing journal articles proving the veracity of recovered memory include :
http://childabusewiki.org/index.php?title=Recovered_Memories
http://ritualabuse.us/research/memory-fms/recovered-memory-data/
http://dynamic.uoregon.edu/~jjf/suggestedrefs.html
http://www.brown.edu/Departments/Taubman_Center/Recovmem/index.html
http://www.jimhopper.com/memory/
http://www.leadershipcouncil.org/1/tm/tm.html
http://mentalhealth.about.com/cs/abuse/a/cooroborate.htm

Shanley conviction upheld by Mass Supreme Judicial Court

January 16, 2010 § Leave a comment

Shanley conviction upheld by Mass Supreme Judicial Court

Defrocked priest Shanley is a victim of ‘injustice,’ his attorney says By John R. Ellement and Jonathan Saltzman, Globe staff 1/15/10 The state’s highest court today upheld the sexual assault convictions of defrocked Roman Catholic priest Paul M. Shanley, who claimed he was wrongly accused by a man who fabricated memories of being abused as a child. Shanley was a key figure in the priest abuse scandal that rocked the Boston Archdiocese….In its unanimous ruling, the Supreme Judicial Court said a Superior Court judge made the right decision when he allowed repressed memory evidence to be used against Shanley during his 2005 trial.

“In sum, the judge’s finding that the lack of scientific testing did not make unreliable the theory that an individual may experience dissociative amnesia was supported in the record, not only by expert testimony but by a wide collection of clinical observations and a survey of academic literature,” Justice Robert Cordy wrote for the SJC

Shanley was prosecuted by Martha Coakley, who is now attorney general and a Democratic candidate for US Senate. Her successor, Middlesex District Attorney Gerard T. Leone Jr.,whose prosecutors defended the conviction before the SJC, applauded the ruling.

“As the SJC recognized, repressed memories of abuse is a legitimate phenomenon and provided a valid basis for the jury to find that the victim, a child at the time of the assaults, repressed memories of the years of abuse he suffered at the hands of Paul Shanley, someone who was in a significant position of authority and trust.”….
But Wendy Murphy, who wrote a brief on behalf of victims rights, applauded the court in a statement. She said the ruling means “that the inability of a child to remember will never be used as a reason to deny a victim access to justice.”

Shanley’s convictions for two counts of rape and two counts of indecent assault and battery obtained by Middlesex prosecutors in 2005. The victim first made his accusations against Shanley in 2002, some 20 years after the abuse took place at St. Jean’s Church in Newton when the boy was between the ages of 6 and 11….During the trial, prosecutors had argued that the victim should be believed because the emotional trauma he suffered created a “dissociative amnesia,” which is recognized by the mental health profession as a legitimate psychiatric disorder.
http://www.boston.com/news/local/breaking_news/2010/01/sjc_rules_in_sh.html

additional information on Shanley

“Damning internal church documents on the Rev. Paul R. Shanley make clear that the Archdiocese of Boston knew the priest was a child rapist yet devoted large sums of money and decades of personnel resources to cover up his crimes.” “The documents also show that Shanley spoke in favor of sex between men and boys at a formative 1978 meeting in Boston of the “Man Boy Lovers of North America,” a precursor of the North American Man-Boy Love Association, or NAMBLA.”  “Shanley admitted openly to raping and sodomizing minors when confronted by church investigators under Boston’s two past archbishops, Humberto Cardinal Medeiros and Law.” from Cover up: Documents: Archdiocese knew priest was a rapist – by Tom Mashberg and Robin Washington – 4/9/02 Boston Herald
http://web.archive.org/web/20020602180710/http://www2.bostonherald.com/news/local_regional/shan04092002.htm

Paul Shanley – Summary of Case: Shanley’s career had four stages. He spent the 1960s as a junior parish priest at St. Patrick’s in Stoneham (a suburb north of Boston) and at St. Francis of Assisi in Braintree (a working class suburb south of Boston). In the 1970s he was a “street priest” designated as the Boston archdiocese’s minister to “alienated youth.” In the 1980s he was a priest and pastor at St. Jean’s in the working class Nonantum section of Newton, west of Boston. And in the 1990s he was a fill-in priest in the San Bernardino diocese and an acting director of Leo House, a Catholic hostel in the New York archdiocese. He is accused of sexual abuse in each decade. His alleged victims were mostly male, but some women have come forward. Ages of the alleged victims at the time of the abuse range from 6 to 26, and the alleged offenses range from fondling to forced oral sex and anal rape. http://www.projecttruth2.com/Paul%20Richard%20Shanley.htm

Websites citing journal articles proving the veracity of recovered memory include :

http://childabusewiki.org/index.php?title=Recovered_Memories
http://ritualabuse.us/research/memory-fms/recovered-memory-data/
http://dynamic.uoregon.edu/~jjf/suggestedrefs.html
http://www.brown.edu/Departments/Taubman_Center/Recovmem/index.html
http://www.jimhopper.com/memory/
http://www.leadershipcouncil.org/1/tm/tm.html
http://mentalhealth.about.com/cs/abuse/a/cooroborate.htm

Shanley repressed memory Massachusetts hearing

September 11, 2009 § Leave a comment

describes crimes

recent news articles and video

`Repressed memory’ at issue in defrocked priest’s appeal – By Jonathan Saltzman Globe Staff / September 10, 2009  Defrocked priest Paul R. Shanley, one of the key figures in Boston’s clergy sex abuse scandal, plans to challenge his rape and indecent assault convictions before the state’s highest court today….The prosecutors say “dissociative amnesia” is recognized as a legitimate disorder by many in the mental health field, including the American Psychiatric Association. Merely because specialists “may not be unanimous about dissociative amnesia does not rule out its validity,” prosecutors wrote in their brief….But under cross-examination, she agreed that people can forget traumatic events and remember them later. Loftus is among those who signed the brief supporting Shanley’s appeal. Shanley’s lawyer said in his brief that no appellate court in Massachusetts has considered whether repressed memory is a valid, scientifically accepted phenomenon. If so, the high court’s ruling in the case could have significant repercussions. Leone said recently that the concept of recovered memory “by victims of abuse has been accepted by both the scientific and legal communities, as well as the jury that convicted Mr. Shanley of child rape after hearing the full evidence in this case.” He said the verdict was just and expressed confidence that it will be upheld.
http://www.boston.com/news/local/massachusetts/articles/2009/09/10/repressed_memory_is_at_issue_in_defrocked_priests_appeal/

Defrocked priest Shanley to challenge use of repressed memories in sexual abuse trial By Denise Lavoie/Associated Press – Daily News Tribune Boston – 9/10/09 Defrocked priest Paul Shanley, one of the central figures in the clergy sex abuse scandal, was convicted after a 27-year-old man tearfully described how the popular priest used to pull him out of catechism classes and rape him, beginning when he was just 6 years old….
Now Shanley is challenging his conviction based on an ongoing debate in the psychiatric community over the validity and reliability of repressed memories. The highest court in Massachusetts will hear Shanley’s appeal today, at 9 a.m., at John Adams Courthouse, One Pemberton Square, Boston….The clergy sex abuse crisis erupted in Boston in 2002 after church records were made public showing that church officials had reports of priests molesting children, but kept the complaints secret, shuffling some priests from parish to parish rather than removing them. Shanley, now 78, was known in the 1960s and 1970s as a “street priest” who reached out to Boston’s troubled youth. Internal records showed that church officials were aware of sexual abuse complaints against him as early as 1967….A wave of lawsuits led to massive settlements, including a record $660 million settlement in 2007 with more than 500 alleged victims in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles and an $85 million settlement in 2003 with more than 550 victims in the Archdiocese of Boston. All told, the U.S. Roman Catholic Church has paid more than $2.6 billion in settlements and related expenses since 1950, according to the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. The victim in the Shanley case received a $500,000 settlement from the Boston archdiocese about a year before Shanley went on trial in the criminal case. Prosecutors originally charged Shanley with sexually abusing four men when they were children in Newton during the 1980s. They later dropped three of the men from the case. All four men said they recovered memories of the abuse years later. During Shanley’s 2005 trial, the remaining victim broke down and cried as he testified in graphic detail that Shanley raped and groped him in the church bathroom, the rectory, the confessional and the pews from age 6 to 12.
“It felt awful,” he testified. “He told me nobody would ever believe me if I told anybody.” Shanley was convicted of child rape and indecent assault and battery. He is now serving a 12- to 15-year prison sentence. A judge last year rejected Shanley’s request for a new trial, finding that the theory of repressed-recovered memories, though controversial, is “generally accepted by the relevant scientific community of mental health professionals.”….others believe repressed memories are well-documented among victims of traumatic events. “Holocaust victims, people who have been to war – the list goes on and on in showing the coping mechanisms to protect the mind from overwhelming fear and tragedy,” said Wendy Murphy, a Boston attorney who is a director of The Leadership Council, a nonprofit organization of scientists, attorneys and educators. Middlesex District Attorney Gerry Leone, whose office prosecuted Shanley, said in a statement that he believes the theory will stand up to Shanley’s legal challenge. “The concept of recovered memory by victims of abuse has been accepted by both the scientific and legal communities, as well as the jury who convicted Mr. Shanley of child rape after hearing the full evidence in this case,” Leone said http://www.dailynewstribune.com/homepage/x302143055/Defrocked-priest-Shanley-to-challenge-use-of-repressed-memories-in-sexual-abuse-trial

good TV video on Shanley case
http://multimedia.wbz.com/m/video/26260680/shanley-challenges-repressed-memories.htm?seek=142.199

summary of case

Shanley was accused of sexual abuse in the 1960’s, the 1970’s, the 1980’s and the 1990’s. His church personnel records indicated he was transferred from parish to parish despite allegations of abuse. The Boston Herald (4/9/02) printed that Shanley “spoke in favor of sex between men and boys at a formative 1978 meeting in Boston of the “Man Boy Lovers of North America” and that he “admitted openly to raping and sodomizing minors when confronted by church investigators under Boston’s two past archbishops, Humberto Cardinal Medeiros and Law.”

There is very strong scientific evidence that recovered memories exist. This has been shown in many scientific studies. The content of recovered memories have fairly high corroboration rates.

Paul Shanley – Summary of Case: Shanley’s career had four stages. He spent the 1960s as a junior parish priest at St. Patrick’s in Stoneham (a suburb north of Boston) and at St. Francis of Assisi in Braintree (a working class suburb south of Boston). In the 1970s he was a “street priest” designated as the Boston archdiocese’s minister to “alienated youth.” In the 1980s he was a priest and pastor at St. Jean’s in the working class Nonantum section of Newton, west of Boston. And in the 1990s he was a fill-in priest in the San Bernardino diocese and an acting director of Leo House, a Catholic hostel in the New York archdiocese. He is accused of sexual abuse in each decade. His alleged victims were mostly male, but some women have come forward. Ages of the alleged victims at the time of the abuse range from 6 to 26, and the alleged offenses range from fondling to forced oral sex and anal rape. http://www.projecttruth2.com/Paul%20Richard%20Shanley.htm

Ex-Priest Is Sentenced to 12 to 15 Years for Sex Abuse in Massachusetts By AP 2/15/05 “Boston (AP) Defrocked priest Paul Shanley, whose crimes shook the Roman Catholic Church, was sentenced to 12 to 15 years in prison on child rape charges….Shanley became a central figure in the sex scandal in Boston after plaintiffs’ attorneys forced the church to release his personnel records. The documents indicated he was transferred from parish to parish despite allegations of abuse.””

“Damning internal church documents on the Rev. Paul R. Shanley make clear that the Archdiocese of Boston knew the priest was a child rapist yet devoted large sums of money and decades of personnel resources to cover up his crimes.” “The documents also show that Shanley spoke in favor of sex between men and boys at a formative 1978 meeting in Boston of the “Man Boy Lovers of North America,” a precursor of the North American Man-Boy Love Association, or NAMBLA.”  “Shanley admitted openly to raping and sodomizing minors when confronted by church investigators under Boston’s two past archbishops, Humberto Cardinal Medeiros and Law.” from Cover up: Documents: Archdiocese knew priest was a rapist – by Tom Mashberg and Robin Washington – 4/9/02 Boston Herald
http://web.archive.org/web/20020602180710/http://www2.bostonherald.com/news/local_regional/shan04092002.htm

Websites citing journal articles proving the veracity of recovered memory include :
http://childabusewiki.org/index.php?title=Recovered_Memories
http://ritualabuse.us/research/memory-fms/recovered-memory-data/
http://dynamic.uoregon.edu/~jjf/suggestedrefs.html
http://www.brown.edu/Departments/Taubman_Center/Recovmem/index.html
http://www.jimhopper.com/memory/
http://www.leadershipcouncil.org/1/tm/tm.html
http://cmx.sagepub.com/cgi/content/abstract/2/2/91

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