Victims' Attorney Calls Out Diocese

By Jim Madalinsky
We Are Central PA
April 29, 2014

HOLLIDAYSBURG, BLAIR COUNTY - An attorney for the alleged victims of Brother Stephen Baker is asking what the hold up is?

On Friday the Altoona-Johnstown Diocese announced it was suspending mediation efforts for the sex abuse settlements, citing the ongoing investigation by the State Attorney General's office.

Dr. Robert Hoatson is the co-founder of the group "Road to Recovery." He represents some of Brother Baker's alleged victims in Pennsylvania, Ohio and Michigan. Dr. Hoatson is calling out the diocese for pulling out negotiations that had been scheduled for weeks. Representatives from the diocese's in Youngstown, OH and Detroit, MI had planned to meet with a mediator Friday in Philadelphia also. Now Dr. Hoatson is saying the dioceses is causing even more harm to the victims.

"It says to the victims that they're once again siding with Brother Baker. Just like the people at Bishop McCort who sided with Baker, and the Franciscan fryers that sided with Baker, and the administrations that sided with Brother Baker," Dr. Hoatson says.

The Altoona-Johnstown Dioceses released a statement saying "It would be inappropriate for the diocese to proceed with the civil matters while the Attorney General's investigation is active. The Diocese intends to resume the settlement efforts related to the actions of Brother Baker as soon as appropriate.


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