Virginia Attorney General Investigates the Catholic Church on Alleged Child Sex Abuse Cover Up
Kevin Biniazan—January 21, 2022
Attorney General Mark Herring announced that his office is heading an “ongoing investigation” into two Catholic dioceses from Virginia. The probe likely concerns clergy members accused of covering up sexual abuse acts, according to sources close with knowledge on the situation in state government agencies and at least one legislator who confirmed its existence publicly this week.”
In the wake of a Pennsylvania grand jury revealing more than one thousand cases where individuals claim they were sexually abused as children by priests and other clergy members, Attorney General Josh Hawley announced an investigation into Roman Catholic Church leadership. “We cannot tolerate this any longer,” said Herring at his news conference today.”Like many Americans, I felt sick when reading about these traumatic events taking place just steps from our own backyard.”
Herring’s office released a statement that said, “We shouldn’t assume the behavior and the problems are limited just to Pennsylvania or to one diocese. If there has been abuse or coverup in Virginia like there was in Pennsylvania, I want to know about it, I want to root it out, and I want to help survivors get justice and get on a path to healing.”
The Catholic Church has been targeted by thirteen other states this year alone for its mishandling of child abuse scandals.
The two Catholic dioceses from Virginia, Arlington Bishop Michael F. Burbidge and Richmond Knestout have released a joint statement addressing the sexual abuse scandals that have rocked both churches over recent months. The following is an excerpt:
“Having met with victims, we know that such abuse is unforgettable, and many carry that burden with them throughout their lives. We continue to welcome the opportunity to meet personally with victims, to hear their stories, and to support them in their journey toward healing.”
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Kevin is a trial attorney who passionately represents individuals injured or harmed by the carelessness of others. Between jury trials and settlements, Kevin has secured more than $55 million for his clients in his first five years of practice.