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Pennsylvania Catholic Church Priest Abuse Lawsuit

Pennsylvania Catholic Church Priest Abuse Lawsuit

August 16, 2018 – A new grand jury report claims that more than 1,000 children have been sexually abused by Catholic Priests in Pennsylvania over the past 70 years, and blames church officials for making the problem worse by persuading victims not to report the crimes and law enforcement not to investigate.

The Catholic Church’s “Playbook for Concealing the Truth”

Church officials followed a “playbook for concealing the truth,” according to the report, which aimed to downplay instances of abuse by:

  • Using softer terminology, such as “inappropriate contact” instead of “rape”
  • Assigning priests untrained in sexual abuse cases to investigate their colleagues
  • Not informing the community of the real reasons certain priest accused of sexual abuse were terminated from their position.

“Tell his parishioners that he is on ‘sick leave,’ or suffering from ‘nervous exhaustion. Or say nothing at all,” the report said.

What You Can Do & How We Can Help

The Schmidt Firm, PLLC is currently accepting Pennsylvania Priest abuse survivor cases. If you or somebody you know has been the victim of the Catholic church, you should contact our lawyers immediately for a free case consultation.

All communication with our law firm is strictly confidential and if you decide to move forward with a case, there are often laws in place to protect survivors by keeping their name(s) off the lawsuits.  The lawyers at The Schmidt Firm, PLLC have experience in these cases and can explain all of the details over the phone. Please use the form on this page to contact us or call toll free 24 hours a day by dialing (866) 920-0753.

What’s the problem?

The report said that while some priests accused of sexual abuse were removed, the clergy member(s) who covered up for them were allowed to keep their jobs, and in some cases even got a promotion.

One bishop identified by the Grand Jury as vouching for a priest accused of abuse was Cardinal Donald Wuerl, who is now the archbishop of Washington. “Until that changes, we think it is too early to close the book on the Catholic Church sex scandal,” the report said.

What are the Victims Alleging?

The report catalogs numerous unthinkable instances of abuse by Catholic Priests. Among them:

  • A priest who raped a young girl in the hospital after she had her tonsils out.
  • A victim tied up and whipped with leather straps by a priest.
  • Another priest who was allowed to continue at his post after impregnating a young girl and arranging for her to have an abortion.

1000+ Reports of Sexual Abuse by Catholic Priests in PA: MSNBC Video

Pennsylvania Most Investigated State for Clergy Abuse

Pennsylvania, a state where about 1 out of 4 residents are Catholic, has been investigated by the Grand Jury over allegations of sexual abuse more than any other state, according to The New York Times. Prior juries investigated the dioceses of Philadelphia and Altoona-Johnstown; the new report covers the rest of the state.

Reactions from the Church

Several bishops, including Bishop David A. Zubik of Pittsburgh, have lashed out in the wake of the allegations, flatly rejecting the idea that the church covered up widespread instances of abuse.

“There was no cover-up going on,” Zubik said. “I think that it’s important to be able to state that. We have over the course of the last 30 years, for sure, been transparent about everything that has in fact been transpiring.”

Do I Have a Sexual Abuse Lawsuit?

The Schmidt Firm, PLLC is currently accepting Pennsylvania Priest abuse survivor cases. If you or somebody you know has been the victim of the Catholic church, you should contact our lawyers immediately for a free case consultation.

All communication with our law firm is strictly confidential and if you decide to move forward with a case, there are often laws in place to protect survivors by keeping their name(s) off the lawsuits.  The lawyers at The Schmidt Firm, PLLC have experience in these cases and can explain all of the details over the phone. Please use the form below to contact us or call toll free 24 hours a day by dialing (866) 920-0753.

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No matter what type of case you have, you may contact us with confidence by filling out the email contact form below or calling us directly by dialing toll free 24 hrs/day (866) 920-0753.

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