Serious allegations against Archdiocese of New Orleans and credibly accused priest detailed in new court filings

By Kimberly Curth
March 03, 2020

Serious allegations against the Archdiocese of New Orleans and a former priest credibly accused of child sex abuse. New court filings detail the accusations as part of a civil lawsuit against the church.

In a rare interview, we tracked down Lawrence Hecker, the former priest accused of being a “serial pedophile who has sexually abused countless children” in a new civil court filing.

Attorneys for alleged church sex abuse victims ask the court to declassify confidential documents from the Archdiocese of New Orleans. According to the court filing, “The crux of almost all of these documents are underlying sexual crimes against children and the Archdiocese’s decades-long cover up of these crimes, which is potentially criminal in and of itself.”

“Unbelievable allegations and some of them could still be within the statute of limitations arguably so once again the argument that it should be released is also pressure on the Archdiocese because we’re going to expose you but it’s also possibly criminal exposure that’s going around here so it’s this, as usual, a big bombshell,” said FOX 8 Legal Analyst Joe Raspanti.

The attorneys for one of the alleged church sex abuse victims says “this case relates to matters of utmost public concern, the sexual abuse of JW Doe and many others by a living diseased pedophile, (Father Lawrence Hecker), and the cover-up of that abuse by the Archdiocese.”

The court records also say “The last four Archbishops of New Orleans (Hannan,Schulte,Hughes, and Aymond) knew that Lawrence Hecker was a serial child predator, yet they moved him, coddled him, and absolutely failed to properly report his crimes to the appropriate authorities. The Archdiocese continues to take care of Hecker and other pedophiles financially and otherwise until this day.”

We found Hecker living in an Uptown Apartment.

“Reporter: We’re trying to get in touch with you about new court filings that allege you are a serial predator. Do you have any response to that? Hecker: no comment. Reporter: do you continue to receive financial support from the Archdiocese of New Orleans? Hecker: no comment. Reporter: did you sexually assault children? Hecker: no comment. Reporter: do you have any comment? Hecker: no, Bye.”

Hecker was named on the Archdiocese’s 2018 list of clergy credibly accused of child sex abuse.The church removed him from the ministry in 2002. He served at a number of New Orleans area churches including, Christ the King in Terrytown, Our Lady of Lourdes in New Orleans, St. Francis Xavier in Metairie and St. Louise de Marillac in Arabi.

In their argument as to why the court should unseal the Archdioceses’ confidential documents, the plaintiffs’ attorneys compare Hecker to pedophile priest John Geoghan in Boston. According to the latest court filing in New Orleans, “when this exact battle was fought in Boston approximately 18 years ago, the Massachusetts courts ruled in favor of the disclosure of exactly the same type of documents the Archdiocese of New Orleans currently seeks to hide from the media, the public, and law enforcement.”

“They came out swinging and they used what happened in Boston that they made the movie Spotlight about and they used it as precedent. They used the connective tissue of Archbishop Hughes who was in both locations and allegedly did this same type of transferring of the priests from place to place,” said Raspanti.

We reached out to the Archdiocese of New Orleans about this story. But, a spokesperson told us because this is a matter of pending litigation they have no comment.



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