Kansas Bureau of Investigation Opens over 100 Sexual Abuse Cases Against Dioceses
Posted on: June 9, 2021 Catholic Church Sexual Abuse
Two years after launching an investigation into child sexual abuse claims against the state’s Catholic dioceses, the Kansas Bureau of Investigation has opened 120 cases and received 205 reports of clergy sexual abuse. Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt requested the Bureau investigate reports of sexual abuse by clergy in the state as other Attorneys Generals have done in states around the country. In 2019, the attorney general in Pennsylvania released the names of over 300 priests it deemed had been credibly accused of sexual abuse. His office continues to work tirelessly for survivors of sexual abuse in that state. In addition, just last month, Wisconsin Attorney General, Josh Kaul, put the state’s five Catholic diocese on notice, ordering them to preserve any relevant document or information relating to previous allegations of sexual abuse by its clergy.
In Kansas, a team of six agents investigated reports of abuse from the public and performed a complete review of church documents. All four of the state’s Catholic Dioceses in Wichita, Salina, Dodge City and Kansas City were investigated. The Society of St. Pius X, a breakaway Catholic group known for its traditional Latin Mass, was also investigated since the Bureau received several reports from people who claimed they had been sexually abused by St. Pius X priests and that leaders of the Society tried to cover up the abuse. The Society did acknowledge that some of its priests may have committed abuse but it denied that any sort of cover up was attempted.
In neighboring Missouri, Attorney General Eric Schmitt also conducted an extremely detailed investigation into reports of clergy sexual abuse. The yearlong investigation included interviews with survivors as well as reviewing church personnel records dating back to 1945 of more than 2,000 priests and 300 deacons, seminarians and religious women. Schmitt’s investigation uncovered 163 members of the clergy who had been accused of sexual abuse of minors. 12 of those clergy were referred for possible criminal prosecution.
It is encouraging to see Attorneys Generals pushing forward with investigating claims of clergy sexual abuse and making the Catholic Church open files it has tried to keep hidden for decades. Hopefully, more states take notice and begin to launch their own investigations. Getting reports like these out to the public is one way to show survivors they are not alone and could be a step in the healing process.
The entire article can be viewed here.
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If you or a loved one were a victim of sexual abuse within the Kansas Dioceses, contact our firm today. Our law firm handles Kansas clergy sex abuse lawsuits and can help you understand how long you have to file a clergy abuse claim in the state of Kansas. Call us now at 1-800-941-7209 for a FREE and PRIVATE consultation.