A late start this morning. Bad weather in Cornwall. Justice Glaude had advised that despite the weather because of time constraints hearings will go into the evening.
We have had a Factum from one of the school boards. Jean-Paul Scott, former Superintendent of Education for the Prescott & Russell Separate School Board has undergone examination in chief. He is now undergoing cross-examination by Dallas Lee (Victims Group). He is testifying in French so have to stay tuned.
John MacDonald is perusing his obstruction of complaint against former Cornwall Crown attorney Murray MacDonald and Justices Peter Griffiths and Robert Pelletier. The complaint was first taken to Cornwall Police Service January 2007. Over two years ago! And no action.
Yesterday, Wednesday 27 January 2009, John sent the following email to CPS
S/Sgt. Garry Derochie.:
John Mac Donald here. I would like to set up a meeting in the next few days to discuss the complaint that I filed in January of last year. Mr. Pelltier, Mr. Mac Donald and Mr.Griffiths have had the opportunity to take the stand at the Inquiry and present evidence. I feel that I have been more then patient and have been willing to hear their side of the events that transpired before acting on the complaint. Please get back to me as quickly as possible.
Anticipating your prompt reply,
John Mac Donald
Good for you John! You have indeed been more than patient. We will watch with baited breath to see how much longer before some action is taken by CPS.
James Stewart’s testimony was wrapped up yesterday. Another swish bang.
No cause for fear in the AGs office. All in all the AG witnesses aren’t on the stand long enough to elicit anything of great significance. That without doubt was the outcome of the premature drop of the ax.
Lots of “I have no independent recollection of that” and “I don’t recall’s from Stewart. A fair degree of finger pointing. For example there has been much discussion on the whereabouts of the four binders which Perry delivered to the AG’s office in 1997 and the subsequent 15 to 16 month delay in getting evidence into the hands of Project Truth officers.
Stewart seemed to imply that since similar materials had also been delivered to Julian Fantino in late 1996 it was really no big deal.
Lead commission counsel Peter Engelmann pointed to a letter in which the writer notes this point. Stewart immediately said he didn’t think he drafted the letter,and adds that he was away part of that summer, and he doesn’t know who drafted the letter.
The letter was signed by Stewart.
MR. ENGELMANN: …in the third paragraph, you say that a virtually identical set of materials had been delivered to Chief Fantino in December of ’96, and you’re making the point that maybe this isn’t such a big deal essentially, if I can — am I taking that correctly?
MR. STEWART: I was — I’m not sure I drafted this letter. In fact the date is September the 6th and I would have been away part of that summer. And I’m not sure whether it was McConnery with, assisting him, Susan Kyle or Terry Cooper. I don’t know who actually drafted the letter.
THE COMMISSIONER: Can we see the last — the signature page, please?
MR. ENGELMANN: The second page, is that your signature, sir?
MR. STEWART: Yes. I definitely signed it and I was answering on behalf of the Ministry.
Engelmann noted that Hall testified there were a number of times which he did not receive:
he talked about ten additional tabs, three of which contained new witness statements and that there were two binders of Police Services Act materials from the Police Services Act charges against Mr. Dunlop that had numerous statements from Cornwall Police officers, all of which Detective Inspector Hall found extremely useful in the conspiracy investigation. And so he did testify to that fact here.
And then what did Mr. Stewart do? Look at this. He pointed the finger right at Perry:
I thought that the officer — and I may stand corrected — had talked to Mr. Dunlop, and I would have expected Mr. Dunlop would have an original copy of everything.
Pass the buck to Perry. The fact that the AG’s office did not forward those documents and apparently had no idea of their whereabouts seemed inconsequential to Stewart.
All agreed there was no harm done. My recollection here is that is not quite the case. Those materials contained some notes from CPS officer Ron Lefebvre. Lefebvre couldn’t find the notes. The notes related to Lefebvre’s initial 28 January 1993 interview with David Silmser.
At “trial” in May 2002 Michael Neville (Father Charlie) used non-disclosure of those Lefebvre notes as one of his arguments to get Charlie off.
But, no harm done!
A final note on Stewart’s testimony. Of interest is the fact that during his tenure as Director of Crowns for the Eastern Region (Ontario) Stewart was attorney Murray MacDonald’s immediate boss. Stewart felt that put him in a conflict situation regarding the conspiracy file only.
Yesterday’s transcript is posted.
Some work on publication bans and monikers last night. The publication ban on C-22 is lifted. C-22, an “alleged” victim of Jacques Leduc, is Stuart Labelle. Stuart Labelle does not desire anonymity. Good for you Stuart!
Note the four Phase 2 documents posted this morning.
Take a few moments to read them. I will post the links below with a brief quotes.
First , with a few exceptions which I won’t get into, I must say that there is some good material in the first three workshops. However what I see in fourth is more social engineering, consciousness raising and wordsmithing at its finest – all to help us see that being a paedophile isn’t at all what we think, and it certainly isn’t all that bad.
The ‘informed’ view from the “experts’ now is that just because someone is a paedophile that does not mean he has molested a child. He is a “non-offending” paedophile.
This puts paedophilia into the category of what is now termed a “sexual orientation.” One can presumably have a heterosexual “orientation,” a homosexual “orientation,” a bisexual “orientation,” or, given the social engineering to which we are being subjected, a paedophile “orientation.”
Calling paedophilia a “sexual orientation” is akin to saying that if you have ever entertained the thought of stealing you are a thief, — albeit a non-offending thief.
Or, that if you have ever entertained the thought of lying, you are a liar, …. albeit a non-offending liar.
Such nonsense. But, scary stuff. Our Charter of Rights, Canadian Human Rights Act and Hate Crimes legislation include “sexual orientation” as a prohibited ground of “discrimination.”
Sanction of paedophilia is just around the corner. And Heaven help anyone who says a nasty word about a paedophile, “non-offending” or not.
And look at the hoops over who is or is not rightly classified a paedophile. And the pains taken to ensure that a homosexual is never ever classified as a paedophile.
Anyway, the links
(1) 04 December 2008: Phase 2 Workshop: “Confidentiality Agreements in Civil Settlements” (Presentation Summary)
– Speaker Simona Jellinek stated “that on the first day of law school, her dean gave a speech in which it was stated that it was a law school and not a school of justice. The message was that the students were not necessarily there
– “ In 2000, the Law Commission of Canada, in its report on sexual abuse in government institutions, stated that confidentiality agreements should not be imposed upon plaintiffs. They are bad because sexual abuse is inherently a secret crime. There is a lot of guilt and shame for survivors having kept the secret for so long. Imposed confidentiality agreements only perpetuate these feelings and prevent survivors from healing and growing.”
(2) 17 November 2008: Summary Of Lecture “Life After Sexual Abuse” by Dr. Reggie Melorose
– Causes of pedophilia are not clear: some simply occur spontaneously as the brain develops, some by accidental conditioning or by identification with a perpetrator [ I think the former fits the paedophiles are born that way theory]
– Molesters usually have a large number of victims (50-100), and are successful, particularly in families, because children are less likely to report. Dr. Melrose reported that 65% of molesters perceive that the relationship is consensual. More “stranger” molesters are reported than family member molesters. A study by Giles Able and N. Harlow: “The Stop Child Molestation Book” indicates only about 3% of all sexual abuse of children results in conviction.
– Dr. Melrose indicates that there are effective treatments for abusers but about 60% of offenders who get treatment re-offend.
– Adults with a history of abuse often minimize their own early experience but try to rationalize their “fight/flight/freeze” response through denial or other coping mechanisms (drinking, drugs, work obsessions). They may also believe they do not deserve happiness, due to shame and disgust about themselves, and may create chaos in their life in response. They may also anticipate early death and not “invest” in life.
– Dr. Melrose gave a list of ineffective tools for childhood sexual abuse trauma survivors: anger management, too much talk therapy, encouraging exhausting activities to cope with trauma (e.g. punching bags). Usually these do not have positive outcomes.
(3) 22 October 2008: Phase 2 Workshop “Talk About Sentencing” (Presentation Summary)
Note that this research was restricted to cases of non-familial sexual abuse of children in the provinces of Alberta, Ontario and Quebec, from 1969 to 2008. Only cases with an adult offender were examined, and only cases where a sentence was imposed were considered.
– The researchers ended up with 768 cases: 541 from Ontario, 105 from Alberta, and 122 from Quebec. In the Alberta cases, 34% of victims were male and 61% were female; in Quebec 60% were male and 35% were female; and in Ontario 47% were male and 48% were female.
– offenders in positions of trust over their victims – babysitters, employers, coaches, teachers, doctors, foster parents – received sentences lower than those offenders who were not in a position of trust over their victims – the exact opposite result than was expected. She suggested this could be explained in part by mitigating factors – prior good character, a good work history and being gainfully employed – all of which indicate conformity to social norms. However, in offenders who use their position of trust to abuse children, their employment often facilitated their access to children and facilitated their opportunities to commit these crimes.
– Ms. Campbell gave her opinion that people in Ontario want minimum sentencing, and that for her, Angela and Louise’s report confirmed for her how far we need to go – and “how out of touch our judiciary are with the population”.
– She pointed out several areas where she had a problem with the current situation in Ontario:
1. Sexual abuse is highly unreported – it skews the numbers with men and women victims – men are still only just starting to come forward with reports of sexual abuse.
2. The fact that perpetrators are more likely to get longer sentences if physical violence accompanies the sexual violence – otherwise it is seen as “just sexual abuse”.
– In her [Campbell’s] opinion, pedophiles will re-offend: “Our first priority must be to protect our children – this is more important than showing mercy to offenders. If the offender has no previous record, that just means that he hasn’t been caught – but it is likely that he has offender many times. We are seeing significantly shorter periods of incarceration today, with judges giving fewer custodial sentences and for shorter periods of time. As more attention is being paid to sexual abuse in our society, sentences are being reduced.”
(4) 01 October 2008: Phase 2 Workshop “Homophobia, Heterosexism and How it Can Hurt the Fight Against the Abuse of Children and Young People” (Presentation Summary)
– it is important that our society find ways to reach out to those pedophiles who are not offending against children, and to enable them to seek treatment and continue to resist offending.
– However, society has not focused nearly as much on pedophilia itself. It is important to realize that a sexual preference for children may or may not be acted upon. Pedophilia needs to be separated from sexual abuse. We need to be able to treat pedophiles to enable them to keep from acting upon their preferences.
– Professor Ryder discussed how heterosexism has negative effects on the prevention of child sex abuse. “The stereotype of gay men as abusers is a huge barrier to preventing child abuse in our society. Keeping gay men from being baseball coaches or boy scout leaders is terribly misguided, and does nothing to solve the problem.”
Heterosexism is also damaging because male victims of male offenders are reluctant to disclose abuse in a timely fashion. The victims are afraid of the stigma and stereotypes. They feel shame about their abuse, and are ashamed to disclose. This may be a factor in the cycle of abuse – abused boys often have homophobic feelings, yet may also be attracted to homosexual acts.
– Professor Ryder outlined five strategies that our society needs to consider:
1. Finding ways to offer support to non-offending pedophiles so that they do not offend.
2. Increasing public education to children and youth – teach them how to distinguish between sex abuse and sincere affection, and teach positive attitudes towards sexuality in consensual relationships.
3. Supporting disclosure by children and youth.
4. Provide consistent therapy and counselling to survivors of abuse.
5. Finding effective means of accountability for perpetrators which includes – but is not limited to – criminal prosecutions. Criminal trials often turn into credibility contests, with the offender saying one thing and the victim saying another. There are no witnesses to the abuse. Criminal trials seldom result in convictions and a more likely to result in an acquittal and revictimization of the child. We need to find other forms of accountability that will discourage future sex abuse.
– Recommended strategies for prevention
We need to educate children and youth on the differences between sexual abuse and positive sexual experiences that are appropriate for their age and development, and those that are not.
[Meaning what? What constitutes a positive sexual experince for a 12-year-old Roman Catholic boy, or, for that matter, any 12-year-old boy?]
Question from the Audience: Most pedophiles are drawn to male children rather than female children. Why?
Dr. Seto answered that it is speculated that there are mechanisms in the brain that control sex preferences, and that there are prenatal influences that affect whether the person will prefer males or females. However, from society’s perspective it doesn’t matter if it is a boy victim or a girl victim – they are still both victims.
Enough for now,