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Posts tagged "connecticut general statutes"

Philadelphia Priest Trial Refocuses Abuse Scandal - Protecting abusive priests by moving them

Opening statements are scheduled for Monday in Philadelphia in the first case in which an official of a Roman Catholic archdiocese has been accused of protecting abusive priests by moving them from parish to parish.
Monsignor William Lynn has pleaded not guilty to conspiracy and endangering the welfare of a child. Lynn served as the vicar of clergy in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia from 1992 to 2004, a position in which he was responsible for investigating reports that priests had sexually abused children. A grand jury alleged that he knowingly allowed priests accused of abuse to continue in the ministry in roles in which they had access to children, according to the district attorney's office. Lynn "acted as if his job was to protect the abuser, never the abused," a January 2011 grand jury report concluded.

Clerical Abusers and the First Amendment

Religious institutions have constitutional protections, but they are not above the law. Unfortunately, that has not stopped the Roman Catholic Church and other religious groups from arguing that the First Amendment shields them from civil lawsuits for negligent supervision and retention of employees who sexually abuse children. Most state courts that have considered the issue have rejected this claim by churches, recognizing that holding religious employers liable for failure to monitor employees in sex-abuse cases does not interfere with constitutionally protected religious freedoms. However, courts in Missouri, Wisconsin and Utah have twisted the First Amendment into a shield for organizational liability for pedophile clergy. In an outrageous case, a Missouri appellate court summarily dismissed a negligence case brought against the Archdiocese of St. Louis by an individual who said he had been abused by a priest. His suit charged the archdiocese with negligent failure to supervise the priest, who had a past record of child sexual abuse. The court threw out the complaint, saying that Missouri law does not allow it because judging the supervision of the priest would require inquiry into religious doctrine, which it contends would violate the First Amendment. This bizarre conclusion would grant churches a special exemption from neutral, generally applicable laws designed to protect children. The United States Supreme Court now has an opportunity to reverse this erroneous interpretation of the Constitution. The justices should grant the plaintiff's petition for review, which they are scheduled to consider on Friday. Since some 20 states have not ruled on this issue, the Supreme Court can provide urgently needed clarity. It should firmly declare that the First Amendment does not exempt religious entities from accountability for exposing children to harm. THE NEW YORK TIMES, Editorial - March 14, 2012

Doctor Charged With Raping Patient Faces New Allegation Of Sexual Misconduct

A woman is suing the East Hartford doctor previously accused of raping a patient, claiming that he had sex with her in a hotel after giving her a drug cocktail and telling her that he had to be the first to have intercourse with her after pelvic surgery, court documents show.

Trial Set in Lawsuit Against Westport Connecticut Schools

A four-year-old lawsuit will go to trial this month as a former Staples High School student who says she was sexually assaulted by her English teacher in 2003 sues Westport Superintendent of Schools Elliott Landon, the Board of Education and a former Staples High School principal for negligence. The trial is set to begin March 20, said Bridgeport-based attorney Cindy Robinson, who is representing the former student. A motion filed by the board's attorney to dismiss the case was denied by Bridgeport Superior Court Judge Barbara Bellis on Wednesday.

Question and Answers Relating to Reporting Sexual Abuse from CT DCF

We found the below questions and answers regarding reporting sexual abuse very helpful from the Connecticut DCF website. It also clarifies Mandated Reporters and their obligations.
Q. How do I respond to a child who reports abuse to me?
A.  Tell the child that you believe them and that you are going to contact people who can help. Respect the privacy of the child. The child will need to tell their story in detail later, so don't press the child for details. Remember, you need only suspect abuse to make a report. Don't display horror, shock, or disapproval of parents, child, or the situation. Don't place blame or make judgments about the parent or child. Believe the child if she/he reports sexual abuse. It is rare for a child to lie about sexual abuse.

Update on Sexual Abuse Initiatives from CT State Legislature

At least six out of 10 children who have been sexually abused suffer  from post-traumatic stress syndrome, according to the state Department of Children and Families. As  such the DCF will use a $3.2 million federal grant to improve the way  the agency, community-based clinics and social workers statewide handle  children affected by trauma in all its forms.

Hartford diocese Found Negligent in Abuse Case

A jury determined Friday that the Catholic Archdiocese of Hartford should pay $1 million in damages to a former altar boy who was sexually abused by a priest decades ago, ruling that the church was reckless and negligent in allowing a known pedophile to have access to children.

Feds: Granby Connecticut Police Captain Had Horrific Child Porn Stash

Federal prosecutors say that a former Granby police captain who was investigating child pornography secretly amassed one of the largest child porn collections in Connecticut.

Lawmakers Ponder Expansion Of Abuse Reporting Requirement

Connecticut lawmakers are holding a public hearing to discuss whether state law needs to be changed in the wake of the child abuse scandal at Penn State University. The informational hearing before the Legislature's Judiciary Committee and Select Committee on Children on Tuesday is focusing on expanding the statute that requires teachers, health professionals and others to report suspected child abuse.

Child-on-child sex abuse poses complex challenges; States struggle with policy of putting kids on sex-offender registries

35.6% of child sex abuse cases are committed by other minors

Recent high-profile cases of child sex abuse have roused national revulsion against the adults who perpetrated them. Rarely mentioned is the sobering statistic that more than one-third of the sexual abuse of America's children is committed by other minors. For many of the therapists and attorneys who deal with them, these juvenile offenders pose a profoundly complicated challenge for the child-protection and criminal justice systems. It's a diverse group that defies stereotypes, encompassing a minority of youths who represent a threat of long-term danger to others and a majority who are responsive to treatment and unlikely to reoffend.

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