For one accuser, penalty can't heal wound

By Kevin Rothstein
Boston Herald
February 9, 2005

Arthur Austin says he was abused by child molester Paul Shanley more than 30 years ago, but he doesn't think a jail sentence will heal the ex-priest's victims.

``There's a lot of Shanley victims out there, and some of them still can't leave their house,'' the Braintree man said. ``People are going to live with this forever.''

Austin, now 56, was a confused 20-year-old when Shanley allegedly began abusing him in a cabin in the Blue Hills. Now there is no apology or jail sentence that is strong enough to appease him.

``He should be put away for whatever remains of his really miserable life,'' Austin said.

Austin hasn't attended any of the court hearings, but if he were to address the court at sentencing he would remind the judge that the bishops and Bernard Cardinal Law who helped Shanley stay in the ministry are ``co-conspirators.''

Shanley faces up to life in prison. But Austin, who took part in a settlement with the Archdiocese of Boston for the abuse he allegedly suffered, isn't expecting any apologies from the priest who was caught advocating sex between men and boys.

``I don't think Paul Shanley thinks he has done anything wrong,'' he said. ``Paul Shanley told me to my face that it is children who seduce adults.''

He added, ``If he said `I'm sorry,' I would be able to fill in the blank, which is to say: `I'm sorry I got caught.' I don't think he's capable of feeling sorry for anyone but himself. This is a very bad guy.''


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