Emotions Run High in Day 2 of Mercure Trial

By Walt McClure
Fox 23
February 4, 2011

[with video]

Friday was day two of testimony in the Gary Mercure trial in Berkshire County. It was another day of graphic and difficult detail from men who allege Mercure sexually abused them while serving at a Queensbury church in the 1980s.

Several young men recounted what they say happened to them. One of their mothers described how she learned of the alleged abuse.

One of the young men, who claimed Mercure sexually abused him in Massachusetts, finished his testimony against the former priest, saying the years of abuse eventually led him to a drug problem that he is now moving on from.

"I'm not looking to sue somebody. I just want justice to be done," he said.

The defense attorney tried to deflate that man's testimony, broaching the possibility his alleged abuse was at the hands of someone else because none of Mercure's DNA was found on evidence tied to that man.

That young man's mother also took the stand Friday, talking about how she trusted Mercure and thought he was a good role model, until her thinking was changed when she found alleged evidence her son had hidden years before.

"They were my son's underwear. They were bloody all over. My baby was hurt bad," she said through tears.

She was shocked that Mercure could do such a thing.

"He was well-liked and he was always at activities that the children were at," said the mother.

Prosecutors also called several other alleged victims from New York to testify in an effort to show Mercure's alleged behavior in Massachusetts may have been part of a common pattern.

"He would use terms like offering it up. He would basically explain that he was helping me become a man," said another victim.

"He told me my parents would get divorced, which was my biggest fear in life. He said it would kill my mother," said a victim.

Friday's testimony prompted emotional reactions from the jury. At least one woman could be seen wiping away tears during the mother's testimony.

At the end of session Friday, the judge told the jury he anticipates that they will be done hearing evidence on Monday or possibly early Tuesday, and that he has scheduled closing arguments and the jury charge for Wednesday.


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