The Latest: Diocese says it 'regrets' harm to abused kids
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
March 1, 2016
ALTOONA, Pa. (AP) — The Latest on a clergy abuse scandal in Pennsylvania (all times local):
The bishop of a Roman Catholic diocese in central Pennsylvania says it's a painful time for the church following revelations of 40 years of sexual abuse by diocesan priests and other religious leaders.
A grand jury report issued Tuesday claims two previous bishops in the Altoona-Johnstown Diocese helped cover up the sexual abuse of hundreds of children going back to the 1960s.
The current bishop, Mark Bartchak, issued a statement saying he deeply regrets "any harm that has come to children."
He says the diocese will continue cooperating with authorities.
He did not comment specifically on the report's findings. He says the diocese is reviewing it.
The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests says one of the grand jury's most significant findings was that a diocesan review board was not focused on helping victims.
A new grand jury report claims two Roman Catholic bishops in a central Pennsylvania diocese helped cover up the sexual abuse of hundreds of children by over 50 priests or religious leaders over a 40-year period.
The 147-page report on sexual abuse in the Altoona-Johnstown Diocese was made public Tuesday by Pennsylvania Attorney General Kathleen Kane.
Kane says none of the alleged criminal acts can be prosecuted because some abusers have died, statutes of limitations have run their course and victims are too traumatized to testify.
The findings are based partly on evidence from a once-secret diocesan archive.
The report is critical of Bishop James Hogan and his successor, Joseph Adamec. Hogan died in 2005 and Adamec retired in 2011. Adamec's attorney says the accusations against the bishop are unfounded.