Monday, November 21, 2005

The Hireling Report #17

Link to Original

Diocese kept abuse cases secret

From Delaware Online, The News Journal

The News Journal
Michael Schulte remembers being in the family bomb shelter at the height of the Cold War when he told his parish priest about being raped as a middle school student.

Father Douglas W. Dempster had come to Schulte's New Castle County home in the Milltown development of Sherwood Park to investigate the teenager's claim that a Roman Catholic priest had sodomized him during overnight trips to Philadelphia and Virginia.

Schulte had kept the sexual assault secret for two years, until the day he saw his attacker get out of a car with a young boy from his neighborhood. When Schulte finally came forward, church officials didn't call police or hire a counselor for him. It was the early 1960s, and those tactics would not become standard until 2002 -- when the abuse scandal in Boston became national news.

Instead, they sent Dempster, who, according to Schulte and his mother, questioned the boy alone in a soundproof, underground vault. Today, despite reforms adopted under the glare of press scrutiny, Schulte is still waiting for the results of Dempster's inquiry.

Interviewing a child in private, without his parents, was just one tactic Catholic leaders in Delaware used that buried allegations of child molestation, a News Journal investigation of clergy sex abuse in the Diocese of Wilmington shows.


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