New Report Reveals More Damning Information in Johnson Sex Abuse Lawsuit Scandal | Wis.Community

New Report Reveals More Damning Information in Johnson Sex Abuse Lawsuit Scandal

TPM has done an excellent piece of investigative journalism, looking into Johnson's role in the Green Bay Diocese sex abuse scandal, via his handling of sex abuse law suits on the Finance Council. 

First, they answer the question of why Johnson felt the urge to drive down to Madison to testify against legislation that would have lengthened the time that childhood victims of sexual abuse can take on their abusers in court:

Deacon Tim Reilly, Director of Administration for the Diocese of Green Bay told TPM that the Church played a significant role in getting Johnson to the state capital. According to Reilly, the Church didn't support the legislation and wanted to raise public awareness of its objections.

They also interview Todd Merryfield, who was sexually assaulted by one of the priests that Johnson's boss on the Finance Council, Bishop Morneau, reassigned 14 times in 14 years, instead of calling the police.  Merryfield makes the excellent point that Johnson knows the identity of pedophile priests:

"These pedophiles that they have hidden away, they pay their room and board, living costs," Merryfield said, speculating that Johnson "has to know who they are because he has to write the checks to somebody."

Jim Stang, a victims attorney, echoes this sediment saying:

...these finance committees -- mandated at every diocese in the country -- are well-positioned to know about the skeletons in the Church's closets. When a case is settled, for instance, it would be in the financial interest of the Church, and therefore the council, to know of any other potential victims, and therefore lawsuits.

Despite demands from SNAP (Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests) that Johnson reveal the names of pedophile priests he knows to still be on the street and to pressure the Green Bay Diocese to do the same, neither the diocese or Johnson have released any names.



October 6, 2010 - 4:12pm