Maryland Attorney General's Office Releases Report On Sexual Abuse Of Children In The Archdiocese Of Baltimore


Credit: Maryland Office of the Attorney General

BALTIMORE COUNTY - The Maryland Attorney General's Office released the over 450-page redacted report on child sexual abuse in the Archdiocese of Baltimore to the public on Wednesday.

The report catalogs more than 80 years of sexual abuse throughout the Baltimore area and lists 156 Catholic priests, deacons, teachers, and seminarians accused of abusing more than 600 victims.

"We are in complete awe of the brave victims who came forward to share their tragic experiences with the commission, they join a huge network of survivors who are changing the world and protecting others from these atrocities," Maryland Survivors Network For Those Abused by Priests (SNAP) said in a statement.

The investigation started in 2018 when the Attorney General's Office began looking into a concerning pattern of allegations made against members of the archdiocese. After public pressure mounted to make the information available to the public, a Baltimore Judge ordered the redacted report be released in February.

The report details how the Archdiocese of Baltimore dismissed reports of abuse and hid abusers rather than protecting victims. The report names 146 abusers, and ten names are redacted.

The report recommends that the Maryland House and Senate amend the statute of limitations for civil actions involving child sex abuse. A bill to do precisely that is waiting for Governor Moore's signature.

Before the report was released, Archbishop William Lori posted a video calling on Catholics to join him in praying for the survivors of sexual abuse.

On its website, the Archdiocese claims that none of the ten individuals whose names are redacted in the report are in ministry with the Archdiocese. Additionally, 39 names identified in the report do not appear on the Archdiocese's website.

According to the Archdiocese, "none of the 39 people named are serving in ministry in the Archdiocese, and none has been for many years."

The website states that "at least 33 of the 39 are deceased" and cites three primary reasons for why they are not listed.

1) the alleged perpetrator is neither a priest nor a religious brother (the Archdiocese's list does not include lay people, religious sisters, or deacons)

2) the alleged perpetrator never had an assignment in ministry in the Archdiocese

3) the alleged perpetrator was first accused of abuse after death and is the subject of only a single, uncorroborated allegation.

Only one person has been indicted in relation to the report. Neil Adleberg, 74, of Randallstown, has been charged with sexual abuse of a minor and related offenses in Baltimore County Circuit Court. Adleberg was the former head wrestling coach at Mount Saint Joseph High School. His trial is scheduled for June 20.

Baltimore County Police spokesperson Joy Stewart said that Special Victims Unit detectives are currently reviewing the report. She encouraged all Baltimore County residents who were victims of unreported sexual abuse to come forward.

"Detectives with the Baltimore County Police Department's Special Victims Unit are currently reviewing the report the Maryland Office of the Attorney General released today. All survivors of unreported abuse that occurred in Baltimore County are encouraged to contact the Baltimore County Police Department regardless of when it happened," Stewart said in a statement. "A victim advocate is available to provide information, support, and referrals to survivors and their families. As a law enforcement agency that follows national best practices, the Baltimore County Police Department has policies and procedures in place governing sexual assault investigations that are trauma-informed, victim-centered, and offender-focused. To contact a detective, clergy abuse survivors may call 410-887-2223.

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