Disgraced Catholic Cardinal McCarrick Charged With Sexually Assaulting Teen
Legal proceedings against former Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, related to charges of sexually assaulting a teenager, have begun.
A Vatican-led investigation found Theodore McCarrick, aged 91, sexually molested adults as well as children while acting as a cardinal for the church. This led to his dismissal in 2019.
Court records now show that he has been charged with sexually assaulting a teenage boy during a wedding reception in the 1970s.
In documents taken from a court hearing, McCarrick is charged with three counts of indecent assault and battery on a person over 14. McCarrick is reportedly the first cardinal in the US to ever be criminally charged with a sexual crime against a minor.
The court case alleges that McCarrick was a friend of the victim’s family, and began abusing the victim when he was a boy. This includes groping the victim when he was 16 in 1974 as they walked around the campus of Wellesley College. The victim’s brother was having his wedding at the college at the time.
After allegedly fondling the boy in a room, the former Cardinal reportedly told him to ‘say three our fathers and a Hail Mary or it was one our father and three Hail Marys, so God can redeem you of your sins,’ documents obtained by The Boston Globe state.
Speaking about the charges, Mitchell Garabedian, a well-known lawyer for church sexual abuse victims, told Associated Press:
It takes an enormous amount of courage for a sexual abuse victim to report having been sexually abused to investigators and proceed through the criminal process. Let the facts be presented, the law applied, and a fair verdict rendered.
McCarrick’s attorney has responded to the allegations, saying they ‘look forward to addressing the case in the courtroom’ and declined to give any further comment.
On the back of longstanding accusations that began at the end of the 1990s, Pope Francis defrocked McCarrick in 2019. However, many are concerned that despite complaints about McCarrick for more than 20 years, he managed to ascend the ranks within the Catholic Church.
For many, the lack of action against McCarrick led them to question the credibility of the Catholic Church.
If you have been affected by any of the issues in this article and wish to speak to someone in confidence, contact the Rape Crisis England and Wales helpline on 0808 802 9999 between 12pm–2.30pm and 7pm– 9.30pm every day. Alternatively, you can contact Victim Support free on 08 08 16 89 111 available 24/7, every day of the year, including Christmas.
Male Survivors Partnership is available to support adult male survivors of sexual abuse and rape. You can contact the organisation on their website or on their free helpline 0808 800 5005, open 9am–5pm Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays; 8am–8pm Tuesdays and Thursdays; 10am–2pm Saturdays.
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