May 28, 2005

Sexual Reeling

Orange County Weekly

by Gustavo Arellano

At the beginning of this year, local victims of priestly pedophilia expected The Orange County Register to destroy the Diocese of Orange for good. After all, 2003 was a banner year for the daily, a year in which the Register consistently scooped its competitors in exposing the pederast-coddling sins of church officials. Some of its more shocking revelations included:

•Register opinion writer Steven Greenhut disclosing in his July 20 Sunday column the case of Father Cesar Salazar, whom diocesan officials refused to remove from St. Joseph’s in Santa Ana despite the discovery of child pornography on his computer. They finally did after the public uproar that followed the publication of Greenhut’s piece.

•Reporter Jim Hinch’s Sept. 14 story on how Mater Dei High School officials never reported to law-enforcement agencies allegations of student molestations at the hands of the Santa Ana parochial school’s teachers and sports coaches.

•A two-part, front-page Register exposé based on a police report in which Father Eleuterio Ramos admitted to molesting at least 25 boys during his tenure in the Orange diocese from 1976 to 1986.

But as the Orange diocese sex-abuse scandal nears its disgraceful end—Orange Bishop Tod D. Brown has agreed to pay $100 million to 87 victims of his child-raping employees, the largest clerical sex-abuse settlement in Catholic Church history—some sex-abuse victims are furious at the Register. When victims needed Orange County’s paper of record the most, they say, the Register failed them.

Posted by kshaw at May 28, 2005 08:36 AM