March 07, 2006

Lawyer demands more records in priest abuse case

Burlington Free Press

Published: Tuesday, March 7, 2006
By Sam Hemingway
Free Press Staff Writer

An attorney investigating claims of past child sex abuse involving Catholic clergy in Vermont has asked a Chittenden Superior Court judge for permission to review the personnel records of 20 current or retired diocesan priests.

Jerome O'Neill, a lawyer representing 15 men who claim they were molested by priests as boys, told Judge Ben Joseph during a court hearing Monday that he needs to see the records to understand how the diocese dealt with reports of priest sexual misconduct.

O'Neill said his request includes reports of consensual sex between a priest and adults. "We want to see all the records," O'Neill told Joseph.

The list of 20 priests that were the subject of O'Neill's request include at least three of the six priests the diocese placed on administrative leave in 2002 after an investigation by the state Attorney General's Office alleged they had engaged in sexual misconduct.

Posted by kshaw at March 7, 2006 06:31 AM