|Statement of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles Regarding the Arrest of George Miller
Archdiocese of Los Angeles
July 24, 2007
In 2005, the Archdiocese of Los Angeles released a summary of information related to priests who had been accused of sexual abuse in civil lawsuits.
The information regarding George Miller indicates that despite written allegations of abuse in 1977, a firm denial of misconduct by Father Miller resulted in the decision of Cardinal Timothy Manning to retain Father Miller in ministry.
There were no further reports of problems to the Archdiocese regarding Father Miller for 12 years. In September of 1989, a priest reported that he felt uncomfortable with Father Miller's friendliness toward boys. But no abuse was reported. Father Miller again denied any wrongdoing.
On May 16, 1996, a complaint of sexual abuse against Father Miller was made to the Archdiocese's Vicar for Clergy. The Vicar for Clergy interviewed Father Miller, and on May 20, 1996, Cardinal Roger Mahony placed Father Miller on sick leave and sent him for psychiatric evaluation.
Father Miller was never returned to ministry. He continued in therapy, and was placed on inactive leave in 1997. At the request of Cardinal Mahony, Miller was laicized in May 2005.
In 1977, Cardinal Manning allowed Miller to remain in ministry based on Miller's denial of an accusation of abuse.
Such a thing would not happen today. According to Archdiocesan sexual abuse policies and procedures enacted by Cardinal Roger Mahony, an allegation of sexual abuse against a minor is immediately reported to the police. The priest is removed from ministry and placed on administrative leave. Pending the results of a police investigation, the Archdiocese's Clergy Misconduct Oversight Board, comprised mostly of professional lay experts, reviews the case against the priest and makes a recommendation directly to Cardinal Mahony.
The Archdiocese will continue to cooperate with the authorities as they investigate claims of sexual abuse against individual priests.
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