Cardinal George gives video deposition in priest’s abuse case

Chicago Tribune

By Manya Brachear Pashman
Tribune reporter
9:48 p.m. CDT, May 29, 2014

Lawyers began recording the testimony of Cardinal Francis George on Thursday amid a widening scope of sex-abuse allegations against defrocked Roman Catholic priest Daniel McCormack, a precaution taken in the event that Chicago’s archbishop’s health prevents him from testifying in a future trial.

George announced in March that doctors discovered new cancer cells in his right kidney — his third cancer diagnosis in eight years — and underwent chemotherapy. Last week, a day after McCormack was arrested on new charges of sexual abuse, George disclosed that the search for his successor has begun and a new archbishop is expected to be named by late fall.

John O’Malley, a lawyer for the archdiocese present at Thursday’s filming, said recording an evidence deposition is “routine in court cases where the witness is elderly or has health issues.” Lawyers for the archdiocese as well as nine plaintiff’s lawyers will have a chance to question the cardinal during the process.

But unlike the rambling question-and-answer sessions conducted during the discovery phase of litigation, the deposition started Thursday was more formal and could be shared with a jury. If the cardinal is available at the time of trial, he will take the stand instead.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.