Good therapy

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Today is day one of Father Brian Boucher’s tw0-day preliminary hearing.  There will without doubt be a publication ban on all testimony and evidence so even if there is media present we wont hear anything about the allegations themselves.  We could however get news of the numbers of people in the courtroom, and Father Boucher’s  demeanor throughout the day.

Boucher, you may recall, was charged in January of this year.  The charges laid relate to sexual offences which are alleged to have transpired between 1994 and 2011.

Father Boucher was ordained  07 June 1996.

Please keep the complainants in your prayers /

*****

After the recent acquittal of  serial molester Marcel LalondeI left Cornwall and returned home angry and frustrated.  Yes, I do often get angry and frustrated, but in this instance I really felt that my anger was unhealthy and such that I  would be wise to remain silent for a spell . I truly  am no good to anyone in that state 🙁

So, … I directed my energies into sorting and wrapping Christmas gifts .  It was good therapy – a pleasant task which consumes a lot of time and had to be done.  Think time 🙂

*****

Sentencing for former long-time Chancellor of the scandal-plagues Alexandria-Cornwall Diocese Denis Vaillancourt is tomorrow:

15 December 2017:  10 am, sentencing, courtroom #7, Cornwall Ontario courthouse (29 Second St. W.)

 

I had hoped to travel down to Cornwall for the sentencing but don’t think now that that will be possible.  I’m off to Alabama next week for Christmas  – lots to do and little time before departure,  and I really do want to and must  say a few words about the Lalonde acquittal.

Please keep the victim and his very supportive family in your prayers.  Let’s pray that justice is done and that this wolf in sheep’s clothing will serve at least a little while in jail for his crimes.

I encourage those who can do so to attend.

Enough for now,

Sylvia

Posted in Accused or charged, Acquitted, Alexandria-Cornwall Diocese, Canada, Clerical sexual predators, Non clerical RC sexual predators, Scandal, Trials | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Several things of note

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There are several things of note today:

(1)  Father Paul Breau

Sex assault charges which had been laid against Father Paul (Archdiocese of Moncton) have been withdrawn:

07 December 2017: Priest accused of sexual assault won’t have to go through trial

Did the plaintiff who filed the lawsuit  alleging repeated sexual abuse in the early 80s at the hands of both Fathers Paul Breau and Yvon Arsenault go to police?  Is that where these charges came from?  Or, is there someone else who is reporting sexual abuse at the hands of Father Breau?  Does anyone know?

(2)  Father Hope Klutsey sma

Father Hope Klutsey, as priest with the Society of African Missions arrived in the Archdiocese of Regina Saskatchewan December 2013 and departed suddenly and quietly in late October or early November 2017.  There has been no explanation aside news that he was said to have been  under investigation by police, had been called back to Africa by his superior and that the police allowed him to leave.  Requests to the archdiocese for clarification have gone unanswered.

So, the understanding was that Father Klutsey had returned to Africa.  But, look at thse screen shots.  Is Father Hope Klutsey currently nestled away at the Milltown Institute of Theology and Philosophy in Dublin Ireland?

It looks that way, does it not?  True, he did attend Milltown for further studies in the late 2000s,  but this seems to indicate that he is currently employed by the institute?

Is Father Klutsey in Africa?

Or, is Father Klutsey in Dublin?

Perhaps he stopped in in Africa en route to Dublin?  Or, …who knows?

The bottom line is that…

No one knows exactly what Father Klutsey did.

No one knows why Father Klutsey was under investigation.

No one knows why he fled the country.

Silence.

A question which now begs to be answered is this:  If indeed, as it seems, Father Klutsey is in Dublin, Ireland, is anyone at risk?  Women?  Children?  Men?

(3)  MR. Hod Marshall

Two more pictures have been added of now deceased serial Basilian molester Hod Marshall who was defrocked/laicized shortly after entering his guilty pleas in January 2014.

Both pictures show  that Marshall was definitely teaching Math and coaching basketball at St. Thomas High School in Huston Texas. (STHS was run by the Basilians) .  Here are the pictures:

1956-1957:   Teaching Math and coaching basketball at St. Thomas High School (Houston Texas) yearbook pictures:

It’s interesting to see the”Pray for me”  hand-written inscription on the Varsity Basketball picture.  Those are, witness below,  exactly the same words he wrote in in the 1955 edition of The Crusader, the yearbook for Assumption College School in Windsor, Ontario:(4)   MR. George Smith

In case you missed it when posted earlier today, Father George Smith  is  now MR. George Smith, and he has been MR. George Smith since January 2014.  He was defrocked/laicized:

05 November 2017: Statement from the Diocese of Corner Brook and Labrador Re George Smith

It is always a comfort to learn that a clerical sexual predator has been “defrocked” and no longer sullies the ranks of the priesthood by his presence.  Better that predatory clergy such as he spend the rest of their days praying for their victims and for all those whose faith has been destroyed or sorely tested due to their sins and crimes while they work at securing their own salvation.

The right thing was done.  I don’t understand why the diocese did not publicize that information or post it on the website until now.  People need to know.  When a diocese does the right thing, people need to know.

(5)  Marcel Lalonde

I decided not to write up anything today regarding the acquittal of Marcel Lalonde.  I just was not in a good frame of mind to do so.  Best I wait 🙂

Please keep the complainant in your prayers.

Enough for now,

Sylvia

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He was defrocked in 2014

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A quick post…

Father George Smith is MR. George Smith, and has been MR. George Smith since January 2014.  He was defrocked/lacized :

05 November 2017: Statement from the Diocese of Corner Brook and Labrador Re George Smith

What a shame we actually  had to ask to find out.

Note the following sentence: “Any allegation of improper conduct by a priest is an extremely serious matter.”

This was a conviction, not an allegation.  Smith entered a guilty plea.

Enough for now,

Sylvia

Posted in Accused or charged, Bishops, Clerical sexual predators | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

Such jocularity

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As you may already know from an earlier comment, previously convicted molester Marcel Lalonde has been acquitted.

Justice Laurie Lacelle delivered her reasons for judgment this morning (Wednesday 06 Dec. ’17).

The one thing I must get off my chest immediately is my absolute shock at the conduct of Assistant Crown Claudette Breault after the verdict was announced and the judge left the courtroom.  There were a handful of us in the courtroom:  Marcel Lalonde, his partner and a female who had accompanied the pair into the courthouse, my husband and I, and two women .     The complainant was not in the courtroom, nor was his mother.  I understand from what I heard that the complainant was at home with his mother waiting for word of the verdict.

And here is what is bothering me terribly

You would never for a moment have guessed that Ms. Breault had just lost a case.  Nor for one moment would it have crossed your mind that the Assistant Crown might  be thinking of the devastation that news of Lalonde’s acquittal would cause the complainant.

Honest to goodness, it was like Happy Days in courtroom #5.  Ms. Breault seemed happy as a lark, smiling and laughing.  As we all headed toward the door there was a perky “Bye, Don”  to Don Johnson.  No response from “Don.”   Another cheery “Bye,Don.”  Still no response, and words to the effect that he (“Don”) didn’t hear her.

Breault interacted with the two unknown women.  First in the courtroom, and then they headed out and down the hallway together.  As they approached the entrance, they were joined by a tall gentleman.  One of the two  women said they now had to go to call the complainant to let him know the verdict.  Mention was made that the complainant was at home with his mother waiting for the news.  The gentleman was asked if he would assist with the call.  I interjected that I was quite certain that the complainant would be absolutely devastated by the news.  And, of that I have absolutely no doubt.

They headed in one direction, and I in another.

 

I understand  that Crowns can’t weep buckets every time they lose a case, but my goodness, I expect better than this.  Just some teeny show of regret.  Perhaps I missed it?  Perhaps.

Perhaps that is Ms. Breualt’s way of dealing with defeat?  That, of course is possible, is it not?

No matter,  the reality is that I swear I personally have never seen such jocularity by a Crown  after the acquittal of a known child molester.

I am still shaking my head.  Still trying to make sense of this.  (So is my husband!)

Perhaps had the complainant  been  in the courtroom for the verdict things would have been different?  Perhaps then there may have been some recognition of the impact that the acquittal would have on the complainant?   I truly would  hope so, but, I just don’t know.     In all honesty, I am so glad the complainant wasn’t there.

Oh my!  Is it me?  Is it “Cornwall”?

The aftermath aside, the judge’s ruling was one of those which went back and forth often  leaving us hanging on a thread wondering which way  she would finally  rule.  I’ll give you a little about that tomorrow.   There isn’t a lot to say, but there are a few things which I do want to and must pass along, but now is not the time.

Please keep the complainant in your prayers,

Enough for now,

Sylvia

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Verdict in Cornwall tomorrow

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The verdict in the sex abuse trial of previously convicted molester Marcel Lalonde will be rendered tomorrow:

Wednesday, 06  December 2017:  10 am, VERDICT, Cornwall, Ontario  courthouse (29 Second St. W., )

I encourage those who can do so to attend.  Pray that justice is done.  Please keep the complainant and his family in your prayers.

*****

Father George Ansel Smith is headed back to jail.  He has been sentenced to 15 months incarceration to be served consecutive to the sentence he is presently serving (on parole)  for the sexual abuse of 13 boys.

Smith has entered guilty pleas to all of the charges.  Fourteen men  who suffered as boys at the hands of this wolf in sheep’s clothing have found the courage to to come forward and contact police!   Fourteen.  That, as you know, is fourteen who have come forward.

The judge’s ruling has been posted:

05 December 2017:   R. v. Smith (Sentence Section 156) (002) 05 December 2017

Please take the time to read it.  Not only does the ruling give us information about the nature of the charges and a bird’s eye veiw of the proceedings to date, it also helps us to understand the process.

Also of import, I was told today that Father George Ansel Smith has been defrocked/laicized.  I have sent an email to the Vicar General of the Diocese of Corner Brook-Labrador essentially asking if he could confirm or refute  that information, and if Father Smith has been laicized what date did this transpire.  As soon as I have a response I will let you know.

*****

I noted elsewhere that I received news earlier today that Father Omer Desjardins died last night.  He has gone to meet his Maker.

My heart, thoughts and prayers go out to those “complainants” who had finally, after decades of silence and shame,  summoned the courage to contact police, both in Winnipeg and Saskatchewan.  Charges were laid.  The  Saskatchewan charges were just starting through the courts – literally at very the beginning of the process.  The Winnipeg charges were wrapping up – the belief from one victim is that Father Desjardins was about to enter a guilty plea on Monday past.  Alas, that court date was adjourned because Father Desjardins was admitted to hospital with heart problems.  And now this.

As those of you who have been through this yourselves know, and often much to your surprise, this is usually  a very difficult time for victims.  Please keep them all in your prayers.

*****

Those who keep tabs on New to the Site know that the following two names have been added to the Accused list:

Father Guillame Pellerin

Father Alexis Joveneau omi

I am working on getting some information together on Fathers Edward Cormier and Clement Guy Melansno.

As I said before, after this I will post names of those identified in lawsuits only after they have been settled, either in or out of court.

Enough for now,

Sylvia

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He’s heading back to jail

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Yes, Father George Ansel Smith is headed back to jail.  15 months incarceration.  To served consecutive to the sentence he is presently serving (on parole)  for the sexual abuse of 13 boys. .

Father Smith must answer here on earth  for his crimes against the man the judge refers to as  “Mr. X.”.   There are sadly judges who would sadly and simply lump “Mr. X” in with the thirteen other victims and run the sentence concurrent to the previous sentence.    Not this judge.

Here is the ruling:

05 December 2017:   R. v. Smith (Sentence Section 156) (002) 05 December 2017

Please do take the time to read it all.  A few excerpts (the headers are mine):

The sentence

  – I have concluded that an appropriate sentence in this case is the imposition of a period of fifteen months of incarceration, to be served on a consecutive basis to any sentence presently being served by Mr. Smith. I have concluded that this is an appropriate sentence because of the seriousness of the offence committed; Mr. Smith’s high level of moral responsibility for the offence; the nature of the breach of trust which occurred; and the long term negative consequences suffered by Mr. X as a result of Mr. Smith’s actions.

Quoting from the Victim Impact Statement

– I made a comment earlier in regards to my memory, that being that I don’t remember  much. However I do have one memory that stands out amongst the rest. My dad passed away in 19… I remember going back to NL for the funeral. I remember walking into the house, opening the kitchen door and seeing him [Mr. Smith] sitting at the kitchen table talking to my mom, he was actually sitting in the same place at the table where my dad would always sit. I remember quickly walking past him and going into the family room, as I felt very uncomfortable and did not want to speak to him, however I did not understand why at the time. I don’t remember anything after that. Very shortly after returning to Ontario, I found myself lying in a hospital bed for two weeks, I had tried to commit suicide. I loved my dad with all my heart and I know I was grieving his death, but I could not comprehend why I would try to actually take my own life. Now I understand that seeing him that day in my family’s home sitting with my mom, was a huge trigger for me and the emotions felt so overwhelming, that all I could think of was to die. The thought of him sitting there with my mom that day will be embedded in my memory for ever. If my memory ever decides to fail me, I’m sure the mental picture will always remain.

 –  Since June 9, 2016, my life has taken a bit of a downward spiral. My health started to decline to the point where it affected my ability to work. Recalling the memories of what was done to me as a child has made it very difficult for me to function in my day-to-day life. I have a very hard time sleeping which makes it very hard for me to concentrate and be effective at work. I started missing work to the point where I was fired from my job in
November 2016. Nine years of my life gone, six months after remembering what happened to me as a child. Needless to say that losing my job has created a few more obstacles for me to overcome. My Financial situation has gotten to the point where I had my vehicle repossessed 7 months ago.  My Health has declined to the point where I have lost almost 30 lbs in the past 6 months.

 – I feel as though my journey to recovery is just beginning, and that reporting what was done to me as a child to authorities was my first step. This isn’t something that I wanted to do, but I felt it was necessary in order to move on, and hopefully start to get my life back.

Re Father Smith blaming Mr, X for not coming forward sooner

 –  Blaming Mr. X for not having come forward until 2016, when he remained silent in 2013, constitutes a perverse form of reasoning. …. Mr. Smith’s comments are concerning because they illustrate little understanding on his part or remorse for his own actions and their consequences for Mr. X.

 – When provided with an opportunity to speak on his own behalf at the sentence hearing, Mr. Smith indicated that he lives with “grief and regret.” He did not say anything to Mr. X.

 – Late disclosure of sexual abuse as a child is common. It often takes many years for victims to come forward. An offender, particularly one in a position of trust who sexually abuses a multitude of children over a significant number of years, has created a situation in which incremental disclosure is highly likely. It would be the height of cynicism for such an offender to criticize his victims for not all disclosing at the same time or to expect lenient treatment as a result.

No free ride

I must consider the sentence imposed in 2013. The offence committed against Mr. X by Mr. Smith is related to those offences and thus the totality principle of sentencing is engaged. I must also consider that I am being asked to return Mr. Smith to prison after he has been released on parole. These are fair and proper considerations, but Mr. X constitutes a separate victim who deserves the attention of the court for the offence committed against him and Mr. Smith must be sentenced for that offence in accordance with the applicable principles of sentencing. He cannot be given a free ride as if the offence against Mr. X never occurred.

Lack of empathy

 – Mr. Smith indicated to the author of the pre-sentence report that he “accepts  responsibility for his actions.” However, the author of the pre-sentence report notes Mr. Smith “displayed limited victim empathy.” In addition, Mr. Smith said the following to the author of the pre-sentence report: “To me, it’s in the past.” Mr. Smith also told the author of the pre-sentence report that he wished the victim had “come forward at the time with the others when the whole thing was put together. It would have been easier for me if he did then. I feel very guilty about him, about all of them.”

 – The author of the pre-sentence report does note that Mr. Smith “displayed limited victim empathy.” This is a concerning comment.

“conditional release remains manageable”?

 – The letter from Mr. Smith’s parole officer indicates that Mr. Smith “participated in a psychological evaluation specific to sex offenders in 2014 which assessed his risk of sexual recidivism to be in the Low range. Following his offending period, Mr. Smith reportedly participated in a rehabilitation program in 1992 for alcohol abuse and inappropriate sexual behavior.” The letter indicates that Mr. Smith’s “release conditions attempt to limit his contact with “any male children under the age of 18.” The letter concludes that a risk assessment indicates that “conditional release remains manageable.” The letter does not explain how this conclusion was reached.

As always, please keep Paul in your prayers,

Sylvia

P.S.  I have just now received word that Father Omer Desjardins died last night.

Posted in Accused or charged, Canada, Clerical sexual predators, Scandal, Trials | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

Sentencing this aft.

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A reminder that sentencing for previously convicted molester Father George Ansel Smith is scheduled for this afternoon (Tuesday) in Cornerbrook, Newfoundland:

Tuesday, 05 December 2017: 1:30 pm, Sentencing, Corner Brook, Newfoundland courthouse (82 Mt. Bernard Avenue)

I encourage those who are within driving distance and free to do so to attend.

Please keep Paul in your prayers.  And, as always, please pass along news of the outcome .

Enough for now,

Sylvia

Posted in Accused or charged, Canada, Clerical sexual predators, Scandal, Trials | Tagged , , , | 3 Comments

Three court dates this week

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Three court dates this week:

(1)  Previously convicted Oblate molester Father Omer Desjardins has a court date in Winnipeg tomorrow:

Monday, 04 December  2017:  10 am, to enter a plea, court room #303,  Winnipeg Provincial courthouse (Main Floor, 408 York Ave.)

I encourage those who can do so to attend.

Please keep the complainants in your prayers, and, as always, please pass along any news you see or hear regarding the outcome.

(Father Desjardins is also facing charges in his home province of Saskatchewan.  This past October two charges of gross decency and two of indecent assault on a male person were laid against him laid in relation to allegations of sex abuse  in Saskatoon and Gravelbourg, Saskatchewan dating to in 1974-1975.  I have been trying to find out in which court these charges were laid.  I will try again tomorrow)

(2)  Sentencing for previously convicted molester Father George Ansel Smith is scheduled for Tuesday:

Tuesday,  05 December 2017:  1:30 pm, Sentencing, Corner Brook, Newfoundland courthouse (82 Mt. Bernard Avenue)

I encourage those who are within driving distance and free to do so to attend.   From Michelle’s description of events last week I believe chances are high that  Father Smith will be in court in person.  Paul Renouf, whose allegations led to this conviction, will listen to the proceeding by phone.

Please keep Paul in your prayers.

(3)    The verdict for previously convicted former Cornwall Roman Catholic school teacher Marcel Lalonde  molester will be rendered on Wednesday:

Wednesday, 06  December 2017:  10 am, VERDICT, Cornwall, Ontario  courthouse (29 Second St. W., )

As always, I encourage those who can do so to attend.

Please keep the complainant in your prayers.

Enough for now,

Sylvia

Posted in Accused or charged, Alexandria-Cornwall Diocese, Canada, Clerical sexual predators, Cornwall, Non clerical RC sexual predators, Scandal, Trials | Tagged , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

A difficult few days in Newfoundland

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This is a lengthy post, broken into two:  (1)  A statement written by Michelle MacIsaac, a Newfoundlander who attended the recent Father George Smith court dates in Stephenville and Corner Brook Newfoundland, and (2) some reminders about Father George Ansel Smith.

The Statement 

Michelle, as you will see below, accompanied Paul R. on his recent trip “home” to Newfoundland  to attend the courtdate of and presumably face his molester, Father George Smith.  I will let Michelle’s words speak for themselves as she provides background and  takes us along with Paul on that painful journey:

November 29, 2017

Michelle MacIsaac,

I came to know Paul R. when my family bought a new house and moved out to Jeffrey’s, NL in 1980. Our family attended Church every Sunday – sometimes in Heatherton, other times in St. Fintan’s.   George Smith was the priest out there for as many years as I recall.  I well remember Paul serving on the altar, along with many of my cousins and other friends.  You may notice I don’t refer to Smith as “Father”. I never will. The only thing that male is father to, might be Satan. How the Catholic Church can still allow him to be included under their “organization” just defies all logic and decency and certainly DEFIES any kind of Christianity. And until the Catholic Church throws all these Satan spawns out and properly removes every single privilege bestowed upon them for being a priest, I will continue to be extremely ashamed to say I was ever baptized into or a part of this religion.

Paul and I were always close friends as teens, and at one point he actually got me through one of my darkest times – when I was contemplating suicide.  If I had only know his own tortured internal hell.  He always seemed to have a kind of “wall” up – but it never ever stopped him from being by FAR, one of the kindest hearted, most giving and loving people I have ever known. He is very much still this way – I can’t figure out how.

In 1983 Paul was kicked out of high school. It was a direct result of what Smith was doing to him, but none of us knew this. I still can’t help but wonder though – surely some of the teachers and adults involved in the system back then had to have known or strongly suspected Paul was being abused, along with many others.  It makes me physically sick to think none of us ever tried to reach out to him, to push past this wall. I will always live with guilt for that.

I saw Paul again a few times briefly in the late 80’s and I remember feeling very unsettled. He seemed more and more lost each time. Then I lost contact with him completely. I would see some of his family living here in my home town and I often asked about him. I was told he was living in Ontario, and not much else. They didn’t seem to want to give out his contact info totally understandably, and I realize why now – because he had closed himself off from everyone for over 20 years, and was living in his own “prison of self-punishment and torture” I guess you would have to call it.

In 2009 I saw him show up on Facebook and immediately wrote and asked how he was doing. He responded briefly, but then a few months later – disappeared again. This was right about the time the charges about Smith were first brought public and I couldn’t help but wonder if he had seen something about it and he immediately withdrew back to his prison, unable to face his demons at that time.

Then in June 2016 he reappeared again. I reached out to him again – and this time he opened up about Smith and told me how he had only recently regained his memory of what had been done to him. When I learned the full extent of the suffering, and the things that this sick demented demon inflicted on my friend and so many others I cared so much about – it left me feeling so enraged and overwhelmed, I can’t even begin to describe it.  I have always been a person who tries their best to help others. In this situation – Paul had helped me so much many years ago by being the best friend I ever had, almost like a big brother.

I made a pledge to him to return this friendship and see him through this extremely difficult journey, and to stand by his side every step of the way. I have shared my pledge with my family and they have all been very loving and supportive, something I cherish and appreciate more than words could ever say. They have all welcomed Paul as a part of our family.

Flash forward November 21, 2017. Paul was brought to Stephenville to attend the court that was scheduled for November 22, 2017. It had already been postponed and delayed many times, but the day seemed to finally be here. When I saw Paul for the first time in over 20 years, it was very overwhelming and emotional. He was not the person I knew as a teen. My 19 year old son actually commented after meeting Paul for the first time “Mom he looks like a broken soul, you can just see it in his eyes, that his soul is broken”. The comment left me in complete tears. It was so accurate.

The next morning we set off to court. On the ride there Paul got a phone call that there had “been a development” and due to circumstances beyond anyone’s control Smith would not physically be in courtroom, but appear by video. This left Paul very shaken up as I think he felt he deserved to be able to see Smith, as he described how his life has been destroyed and robbed from him. But our justice system saw fit to make things easier for Smith – yet again. Shock #1; not so much.

We were escorted to a waiting area and advised that there were some difficulties getting the video equipment set up because it was already in use by another court case happening and there was only one set of video equipment.  One would think that this court day – which had been booked for a very long time now, would have been properly organized so as not to cause any more unnecessary pain and suffering to the victim than was going to happen by the actual court process. Well delay after delay, false starts, and torturous waiting… and 4 hours later they come in and announce Smith and his lawyer have had to leave because their time had “run out” and they could not stay any longer. Now court would have to be rescheduled to Monday, November 28/17 and in Corner Brook this time – an hour’s drive away.  Paul broke down many times throughout the waiting, but this news just devastated him.

Monday finally arrived. We were kept waiting once again about an hour late, but the time had come to walk into the court room. We had been told that Smith’s appearance on the video screen would be done after we got inside and settled away, but as soon as we entered the door – Smith’s smug, bored looking face was plastered across the video screen. Paul gasped and staggered backwards out through the doors and completely fell apart. It took some time for us to get him gathered together enough emotionally to reenter. Then as we sat down we were advised that the video cameras were set up so that Smith would not have to see anyone other than the Judge, however we were all forced to sit and stare at his face throughout the full proceeding. Such kindness towards the accused, to prevent him from having to view his victim as he poured out his pain and torture in front of a courtroom.  Shock #2… So very sad.

There was what I assume is the usual “red tape” and legal mumble jumbling. I have never been in a court proceeding like this in my life so had no idea what to expect. I will try to relay the course of events as well as my memory recalls:

The Crown Attorney asked the Judge and Defense attorney if it would be okay for the Victims Services Advocate to read out Paul’s Victim Impact Statement, as he did not feel emotionally capable of getting through it himself. If I had my time back I would’ve insisted on trying to do this myself, because in my humble opinion this statement needed to be read with the full emotion, rage and pain with which it was written. Unfortunately, when it gets read by someone not personally invested at all – the tone of voice changes its meaning and the emotions it inflicts. And I mean no offence to this advocate whatsoever, she was great throughout the entire ordeal and very helpful. But I just found her voice similar to a Kindergarten teacher very cheerily reading to a group of children. Paul broke down many times throughout the reading of it, especially in the sections where his parents were mentioned. At times, I had all I could do to hold up his shaking, weeping body, which was often curled over almost in fetal position sobbing, and keep him from falling onto the floor. Finally this reading of the impact statement ended.

Then began the Crown Attorney’s presentation. She did a very thorough and lengthy presentation arguing that Smith should get 6 to 12 months of jail time. I was kind of dumb struck that this was all they were asking for??! He was let out early in the previous trial – serving only 4 years of an 11 year sentence. There were 41 charges…. And now another person comes forward and goes through all this to get him back in court… and we were only asking for 6 to 12 months???  Wow. Defense was asking he get  6 to 12 months of ‘house arrest only’ – a conditional sentence. It was mentioned repeatedly that if he was given jail time it would revoke his parole, however if he was given house arrest it would not revoke his parole. I have no idea what the significance of this was. I just couldn’t understand why they weren’t saying “he deserves to now be thrown back in jail and serve out the years he should have served in the first place, and another 5 years for this other victim”. That seemed quite reasonable to me.   The judge then pointed out that he felt the “maximum suggested by both counsels of 12 months was too low” – and that he has the right to make it longer if he sees fit, and both counsels agreed.

The Crown presented several ‘jail-time supporting’ cases such as the one against Graham James – the hockey coach in Alberta, and Sheldon Kennedy, NHL hockey star who was brave enough to initially come forward and accuse and charge him of molesting him. Apparently after James was let out of prison for the crimes against Kennedy, other victims came forth and James was ultimately sent back to prison. She made a really solid – albeit very lengthy presentation.

At this time the Defense was asked to begin their presentation. Now I know ‘they have a job to do’. I totally get that. But the lawyer Smith has representing him – well I guess I shouldn’t say what I feel because I would probably get charged myself.  I’ll just state the facts as I recall them. He started reading about Smith, and what a ‘wonderful, great upbringing’ he had, and his solid education, his devotion to the Church which is still as strong as ever today, how he attends mass 3 to 4 times a week. He talked about Smith’s sister and how she is quite ill and Smith goes to visit her often. Well how sweet I thought. How lovely that he has maintained his family ties all these years, while Paul kept himself isolated from his entire family and any friends and locked in a mental HELL, for reasons he didn’t even understand himself.

Then the lawyer talked about the accusations in 2009-2010 and said that at the time, Paul’s name was given to authorities as a “potential victim”. I could see the look of shock whip across Pauls’ face.  The lawyer claimed that in this report he had (which the Crown Attorney later told us she knew absolutely nothing about) it stated that the authorities were “unable to ever get a confirming statement from Mr. Renouf” and he wasn’t sure if it was because they actually were not able to physically find Paul, or if he wouldn’t respond/or chose not to respond to their attempts to contact him. The lawyer said he felt this seemed to show Paul had ‘no desire to see his own charges brought forth then’, or maybe it just showed the police simply couldn’t find him. However he repeated over and over that much greater ‘due diligence’ should’ve been exercised by the authorities to get in touch with Paul back in 2009 and  that this should never have been allowed to just slip away.  He questioned why Paul – all these years later, suddenly feels compelled to come forward now, since it would’ve been a “lot better for all involved if he had just come forward with the others and had this all taken care of back then”. He also said that he had read through the initial Police report Paul filed and according to the accused, the details of the alleged assault seemed “maybe a bit exaggerated and not quite accurate, and that the abuse had maybe not gone on as long as was stated” but that the accused did accept it.

I could see the shock, pain and absolute outrage come across Paul’s face at this line of commenting because A) we both knew that at NO time did anyone whatsoever contact or attempt to track Paul down in 2009-2010, if they had, who knows – maybe he would have revealed everything. But no one did. And B) to make this now sound like Paul was ‘uninterested in seeking justice until it suited him’ was so outrageous, lastly C) How DARE this arrogant, ignorant slime bag try to even insinuate that what he put Paul through was somehow ‘not quite that bad’ as Paul stated. Even the judge finally felt compelled to speak up.

He addressed the defense lawyer and said something to the effect: “I have to point something out here, it is entirely possible and clearly established in the very well written Victim Impact statement submitted to the court – that in 2009-2010 Mr. R. was unable to come forward for his own personal reasons, he was not ready at all. As a victim that is 100% your right, a victim MUST only come forward when HE is ready, not when it may be more ‘convenient’ for the accused. Is that clear?”  We were all very happy that the Judge took this opportunity to interject this very valid point. And of course, the defense lawyer then started back tracking.

The defense however kept hammering away that “in any court case in this province there has to be some ‘finality’, he felt the courts cannot and should not allow victim after victim after victim to keep coming forth with new charges as time passed, without putting an end to it at some point.” I was so angry hearing him say this, I had all I could do not to lose it.

The defense went on with a few case laws which supported their position that Smith should only get house arrest because the courts had decided he had been “fully rehabilitated” since they granted him full parole 7 years early. He went on and on about how there had been no further incidents and that this new charge should not create a situation where a man almost 80 years old has to serve even one day back in jail, repeating how even one day in jail would serve no purpose whatsoever and was ‘completely unnecessary and unwarranted’.  How this guy sleeps at night is beyond the windmills of my mind. One of his final comments was that his “client, since the period of his release, and even all the while being incarcerated – has lead a very good, Christian life, and has shown himself to have a solid and good Christian moral character during this time”. I finally lost it and blurted out “JESUS!!!” and the judge promptly addressed Paul and advised him that although he understood how emotional this all must be, that no such outburst would be tolerated and they could not happen again. So I got another gentle nudge to keep mum. God forbid anyone upset poor Smith, must show the utmost respect to the accused.

Finally, the ending arrived and the sentencing date was debated and decided to be December 5th, 2017. The judge insisted that for the sentencing he wants Smith physically present. The defense lawyer tried vehemently to argue that Smith be allowed to use video appearance again but the Judge shut him down flat and said no – Smith would have to appear, but that Paul is going to be allowed to hear the sentence by telephone on that day if this would be easier for him. Paul said it would be much easier because he has multiple very important medical tests coming up and could not see being able to travel back here again so soon.

We left the courtroom. Paul looked completely emotionally and physically demolished. I was and still am in a complete state of shock. If this is how our justice system treats the victims in any situation – is there any wonder why SO many die by their own hand, and/or never decide to come forward at all. Who could blame them???   I certainly could never say that I felt this entire process was in any way, shape or form supportive, or that it works in any way to denounce, deter or discourage a perpetrator from committing these horrific, life destroying acts.   Our current justice system in my humble opinion is the most morally bankrupt and dysfunctional institution I have ever witnessed. It is absolutely 100% in favor of protecting, defending and nurturing the accuser and COMPLETELY crucifying the victim emotionally, spiritually, mentally, I would go so far as to even say physically – since Paul’s current state of health is quite a living testament to what this has done to him.

I can only hope and pray that the tremendous amount of love and support that Paul has now allowed himself to accept will help him to some day fully recover and begin to start living some semblance of a fulfilling and rewarding life. He has taken the first step and I can testify that it was definitely an extremely difficult one. But he has done it. And whatever the outcome is – I feel his life should now only get better. We who love him will accept nothing less.

Thank you for sharing with us Michelle.    You are truly an angel.  And thank you for being there with Paul.

It broke my heart to read this.  A difficult few days for Paul.

All so true.  I dare not say what I think of most defence lawyers.  They  sing from the same song sheet.  It’s the name of their game.  Cruel, cold-hearted, calculating.   How they look themselves in the mirror every day is beyond me.  I don’t for a moment believe that they, of all people, do not understand the difficulties victims have in coming forward ,but, – they play on that and use it berate and disparage the victims and attack their credibility.  I truly do not understand how they can do it.

It’s good to hear that the judge insisted that Father Smith be there for sentencing.  I hope and pray that you and others can make it Michelle.

Father Smith will be sentenced 05 December.  Let’s hope and pray that justice and common sense – not his defence lawyer – prevail and that Father Smith will be back behind bars where he belongs, at least for a few months.

Please, everyone, keep Paul in your prayers.

Reminders 

And now for those few reminders:

First, a reminder that back in December 2011 Father Smith faced in the order of 70 sex abuse charges.  The abuse, which spanned 20 years between 1969 and 1989,   transpired in places such as Port Saunders, Corner Brook, Stephenville, St. Fintan’s, Cape St. George, Deer Lake, Newfoundland, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia. Most boys were were 12 or 13 when the abuse started: one was eight-years-old.

 Father Smith entered a guilty plea, and, as is so often the case with guilty pleas, a number of the charges against him had just up and disappeared .  Poof!  A total of thirty charges were gone.

No matter, in March 2013 Father Smith was sentenced to 11 years in jail.

It all sounded so ‘just.’   So many  thought that finally justice had been done.  However, believe it or not,  less than three years later, in December 2015 , the predatory priest was granted day parole!

Bad enough.  Then, the icing on the cake for Smith:  in July 2016 – barley over three years into an 11-year-sentence –  the serial molester was granted full parole.

According to media reports, when Smith was initially sentenced his lawyer lawyer Tom Williams “said his remorseful client had expected such a lengthy sentence and was prepared to accept his punishment.”

A reminder too that in the early ’90s Father Smith was recycled out of Newfoundland and into Prince Edward Island, this after he was treated for alcohol abuse and his attraction to young boys.

Indeed, the Bishop of the day when Father Smith was molesting his way around Newfoundland and beyond, and when he was reported, and when he was shuffled off for “treatment””  and when he was quietly recycled and dumped on the unsuspecting faithful in Prince Edward Island was,  …. Raymond Lahey.

 In 2011 Lahey, as we now know all to well, entered a guilty plea in Ottawa to porn charges.

Bad enough.  At that time we learned that Bishop Raymond Lahey, – the man who, by the way,  had also brokered the deal with victims in the Diocese of Antigonish – had been in a homosexual relationship for the previous ten years, and that he wanted the relationship to continue, and that before the ten year relationship began, he was doing one-night stands, and that he has a thing for sado masochism.

There was also a lawsuit launched alleging sex abuse of young boy.  I have no idea if that ever settled or not.  I believe that had it gone to trial we would have heard.  It may well have settled out of court.  It may have been dropped.

There hasn’t been a peep about what Lahey is up to these days, the only for sure is that he is mercifully no longer and bishop, and thankfully no longer a priest.

My thoughts and prayers go out to all those children in the Diocese of St. George/Corner-Brook-Labrador who have suffered sexual abuse at the hands of a priest.  I commend every one of you who has found the courage to come forward.  I pray that those who are still silent and afraid will find courage to speak up, to shit the burden of of shame where it rightly belongs, onto the shoulders of your molester.

(I have just added the names of the Bishops of St. George’s Diocese (now Diocese of Corner-Brook Newfoundland) to the Father Ansel Smith page.  And yes, as you know, I always refer to convicted molesting clergy who remain in the priesthood by the title:  “Father.”   I know it’s an oxymoron, but, for me a constant and terribly unfortunate reminder both that (1)  our bishops have no problem permitting known molesters to remain in the priesthood, and (2) the priesthood is sullied by the presence of known clerical molesters.)

…….

Below, a picture of Michelle taken outside St. Columcille Roman Catholic Church around 1981-1982, possible at her Confirmation.  On the left:   Bishop Raymond Lahey.  On the Right:   Father George Ansel Smith.

Enough for now,

Sylvia

Posted in Accused or charged, Bishops, Canada, Circling the wagons, Clerical sexual predators, homosexual, Raymond Lahey, Scandal, Treatment centres, Trials | Tagged , , , , , , | 2 Comments

It’s finally posted

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It took a while, but the page for Father Lucien Larre has finally been posted.  A you can see, Father Larre has been in the news a fair bit over the past few decades, everything from his founding of the Bosco Homes for troubled youth, facing 14 charges of both physical and sexual abuse, conviction on two physical assault charges and acquittal on all others, sentence to one day in jail with his time in court serving as the one day in jail, to his troubles as a Psychologist.

If anyone can fill in any information please do pass it along.

I am currently attempting to find out if Father Larre, a former Oblate priest,  is still incardinated (ie, ‘belongs’ to) the Archdiocese of Regina, Saskatchewan.    As soon as I find out I will let you know.

*****

In case you missed it, the next court date for previously convicted Father George Smith is:

05 December 2017: 1:30 pm, Sentencing, Corner Brook, Newfoundland courthouse (82 Mt. Bernard Avenue).

Please keep Paul in your prayers.

*****

 I will, as promised,  add pages for the names of recently New Brunswick priests.  After this  I will add the names of clergy identified in a lawsuit only after the suit is settled.   I will post articles, but will not put together a page.

Enough for now,

Sylvia

Posted in Accused or charged, Clerical sexual predators | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment