301 “predator priests” abused more than 1,000 children and the Church knew, and Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro—who helped expose it—has a plan to stop it from happening again.
“As a result of our grand jury investigation in Pennsylvania, we unearthed the most systematic and comprehensive abuse of children in Pennsylvania and Catholic diocese,” he said. “301 predator priests were identified, thousands of childhood victims, and a systematic cover-up by senior Church officials.”
Shapiro says that, after studying the case extensively, the grand jury came to a unanimous decision on four points.
First, was to eliminate the criminal statute of limitations on childhood sexual abuse.
“The average age of an abuse survivor, childhood abuse survivor, coming forward, is 52 years old,” Shapiro said. “They keep this truth buried inside of them, oftentimes for decades, and what happened during that period of time? Church officials covered up the abuse.”
Second, is make it so Church officials can’t others can’t use confidentiality agreements to silence victims and not allow them to come forward and speak to law enforcement. Third, is Clarify who people are who have to alert authorities when they see abuse and when.
Fourth, is to give the abused the opportunity to confront their abusers in court.
“We’ve gotta make sure that they have the ability to recover,” said Shapiro.