Judge to make decision on public release of report on Archdiocese of Baltimore abuse

WBAL-TV, NBC-11 [Baltimore MD]

March 13, 2023

By Tommie Clark

On Monday, a major step will be taken towards the release of a report detailing child sex abuse within the catholic church as the deadline comes for the Attorney General’s Office to present the redacted report to the Circuit Court.

The judge will then decide when the public can see the report on the Archdiocese of Baltimore. Monday, a Maryland judge will receive a pivotal report on a four-year grand jury investigation into sexual abuse inside the Archdiocese of Baltimore.

Those with the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, or SNAP, said it’d mean vindication for victims.

“The judge could look it over for hours, minutes, days; we just don’t know,” David Lorenz, the Maryland Director of SNAP, said.

Once the Attorney General’s Office hands over the redacted report, those named in it will be contacted, then the report can go public.

“The names in the report will be the perpetrators and the enablers. So, it’s a process. And tomorrow will just be the first step,” advocate Gemma Hoskins said.

Investigators said that 158 clergy members within the Archdiocese of Baltimore abused more than 600 people over an 80-year period. Both boys and girls sexually abused range in age from preschool to young adults.

“What we’re (going to) find out tomorrow hopefully is that, in fact, what we’ve been saying is true, and the Diocese has not been forthcoming, and the Diocese has hidden predators. And that our stories are true,” Lorenz said.

In Maryland’s General Assembly a senate committee just voted to advance the “Child Victims Act of 2023.” The bill repeals a provision, giving the Catholic Church sweeping immunity from sex abuse lawsuits. It still needs to pass the full house and senate. Outspoken advocates against the abuse, like Hoskins, said survivors are anxiously waiting on this act and the report.

“I think when it happens, everybody’s (going to) be in shock for a little while. It’s (going to) take some time to process it, but then we’ll be able to move on and help people get justice for what happened to them,” Hoskins said.

In a statement to WBAL-TV, the Archdiocese of Baltimore states:

“The Archdiocese acknowledges that what this report includes, and its eventual release will serve as a painful and new reminder to all victim-survivors of the abuse they endured. The Archdiocese of Baltimore continues to cooperate fully with the attorney general and the with the courts.”