Gov't: Pa. church put reputation over kids' safety

Prosecutors say the Archdiocese of Philadelphia engaged in a long-standing criminal effort to protect sexual predator priests, putting the reputation of the church over the safety of children.

The Rev. James J. Brennan enters the Criminal Justice Center, Monday, March 26, 2012, in Philadelphia. Brennan is charged with raping a 14-year-old boy in 1996. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Prosecutors say the Archdiocese of Philadelphia engaged in a long-standing criminal effort to protect sexual predator priests, putting the reputation of the church over the safety of children.

Assistant District Attorney Jacqueline Coehlo told a jury Monday during opening statements of a landmark trial against a priest and high-ranking church official that a decades-long conspiracy met victims with skepticism "at all cost."

Monday marked the beginning of prosecutors' case against Monsignor William Lynn and the Rev. James Brennan.

Lynn is the first U.S. church official charged in an administrative role with endangering children. Brennan is accused of raping a 14-year-old boy in 1996.

A defrocked priest who had been a co-defendant in the case pleaded guilty to sexual assault last week.

Associated Press
Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


Join the Conversation!

To comment, the following rules must be followed:

  • No Obscenity, Profanity, Vulgarity, Racism or Violent Descriptions
  • No Negative Community Comparisons
  • No Fighting, Name-calling, or Personal Attacks
  • Multiple Accounts are Not Allowed
  • Stay on Story Topic

Comments may be monitored for inappropriate content, but the station is under no legal obligation to do so.
If you believe a comment violates the above rules, please use the Flagging Tool to alert a Moderator.
Flagging does not guarantee removal.

Multiple violations may result in account suspension.
Decisions to suspend or unsuspend accounts are made by Station Moderators.
Links require admin approval before posting.
Questions may be sent to webmaster@wvlt-tv.com. Please provide detailed information.

powered by Disqus

WVLT VOLUNTEER TV

6450 Papermill Drive Knoxville, TN 37919 Phone - (865) 450-8888; Fax - (865) 450-8869
Gray Television, Inc. - Copyright © 2014 WVLT-TV Inc. - Designed by Gray Digital Media - Powered by Clickability 144235975 - local8now.com/a?a=144235975