Another cover-up?

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Another cover-up?  A cover up involving Oblate priest Father Omer Desjardins?

You remember him.  The Father Omer Dejardins who, on 22 January 2015,  entered a guilty plea to charges that he had sexually abused a 10-year-old girl in Saskatchewan in 1978.   The Father Desjardins who was just charged and is now facing four sex-related charges dating to the late 80s in Winnipeg, Manitoba.

Look at this:

12 January 2017:  Winnipeg Oblate priest charged with historic sexual assault

According to Joe, Desjardins was reported by another boy at the Credo Home in the late 1980s.  The boy was removed from the home, – Desjardins was not. (After that, however, Desjardins was no longer night caretaker at the home, and, although Desjardins was still pretty much a regular at the home,  it seems that, mercifully,  the sexual abuse of Joe ceased)

Then, in 1992 Joe and another resident of the home blackmailed Desjardins:  the deal was no police if Desjardins paid them.   In short order, the pair had $5,000 in hand, and,  it seems, in equally short order, the wayward youth had blown the money.

In 1993, the pair retained a lawyer to sue the Oblates.   There was an out-of-court settlement.   With that, it seems, Dejardins was finally gone from the group home. But not, alas, from the priesthood.  In fact, life it seems pretty much went on as usual for Desjardins.  Father Omer Desjardins continued, as he had done since 1988 and before he was reported , to serve the sick and dying and their families,  ….as Chaplain at St. Boniface Hospital in Winnipeg.

Please keep Joe and all the boys from that group home in your prayers.

Enough for now,


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13 Responses to Another cover-up?

  1. Joe says:

    I fear that there was never a period of his career that he wasn’t abusing children, both male or female. His career has involved youth throughout, either as a hockey coach, music teacher, addictions counsellor, or caregiver in the group home.
    I hope anyone who’s lives have been “touched” by this man can find the strength to come forward.

  2. rachael o reilly says:

    I have long believed that the only satisfactory way to respond to such horrific crimes is by the re introduction of the death penalty. Those who collude, facilitate, enable and cover for such crimes should also face this penalty.

    Why do I assert such a radical response? I feel we here in Australia are being given the ‘run around’ by the Church in relation to such abuse. They continue to believe they are exempt from legal procedures. Imposition of such a penalty will once and for all stop this criminality in its tracks and will make prelates ‘think carefully’ about what they are prepared to do in relation to providing cover for such violent men.

    Remember those who enable and cover such abuse are as guilty of abusing the child as if they had done this themselves

    • Bob LeDrew says:

      I respect your opinion, Ms. O’Reilly, but I can’t share it. The death penalty has seen too many people who did not commit the crime for which they were convicted executed. The files of AIDWYC and The Innocence Project are full of people who might well have been executed and never exonerated.

      I understand and share your outrage at some of the individual and institutional actions around sexual abuse, but I believe state-sanctioned murder is no solution.

      • "prima facie" James Porter Bateman says:

        PLEASE BE ADVISED!! THIS POST INCLUDES A VERY DISTURBING AND DESCRIPTIVE EXAMPLE. (Sylvia. If you do not post this, I’ll understand)
        I believe there are many variables influencing our perspectives and beliefs. We then “go out” and find people or documents to support our perspective, opinion and belief.
        Mr. LeDrew: I acknowledge your opinion about what you appear to believe is “state-sanctioned murder”. You reference your interpretation of files from “AIDWYC” and “The Innocence Project” as the basis in part or in whole for your general “belief” that “state-sanctioned murder is no solution.” I believe you use the word “murder” to slam home your perspective, “belief.”
        I believe if a group of people were divided into two sub-groups,
        1) “for capital punishment” and 2) “against capital punishment”, and, if these people were sent out to various University Libraries/Law Libraries or similar sources, to research and present “papers” supporting their assigned positions, each group could and would present very compelling presentations supporting their particular position. In present times and for various reasons, I believe “the system” has decided to be more relaxed on judgements and sentencing. As I see it, perhaps there should be more professional, legal “activist or watch dog” types, given the ability to follow “cases” closely and with an avenue to provide a voice during the process. However, when facts, evidence, trial evidence, admissions of guilt, jury submissions, are indisputable, then, I believe an “appropriate” sentencing is required. But what is “appropriate”. WITHOUT PREJUDICE: RISK READING EXAMPLE: For example: Let’s hypothesize; “A young person of eight years old is intercepted while leaving school by a supposed friend of the child’s parent. The child is missing for several weeks. Eventually, the child is found dead in the woods, dismembered. Signs are present that the child was sexually assaulted multiple times, before and after death. Subsequently, a pair of adults are arrested and beyond a shadow of a doubt, the adult pair admit to the crime and are found guilty.” They go to trial. They are found guilty. They are sentenced. Eligible for parole? Eligible for day passes, visits into the community or conjugal visits? What is the prison system like where they are sent to, televisions, dental, medical, an environment that encourages many to return because it is so cozy? No, from “my perspective and belief”, I would not consider “death” to the accused I have written about to be considered “state-sanctioned murder”. As I see it, it would be an appropriate consequence for the deplorable and unlawful social deviance perpetrated by the “murderer” of the young eight year old child. These “murderers” would never “murder” again.

        • Sylvia says:

          Happy New Year James!! So very good to see you posting again 🙂 Your comments always challenge us to think a little deeper.

          I personally believe that child sexual abuse is such a horrific and EVIL crime that it warrants the death penalty. Of course, we don’t have the death penalty in Canada so the next best thing would be life behind bars. We’re a long long way from that, a sad reflection I believe of societal tolerance for these horrific crimes.

        • Bob LeDrew says:

          I can’t support the death penalty, even in the case you provide. Even the most heinous and unquestionably guilty. I’d rather have 10 go free than one person wrongfully executed. That’s my perspective. I don’t expect to convince or argue, it’s just my perspective. And I entirely respect the opinions of others who are in favour of the death penalty.

          • Sylvia says:

            The way I see it Bob, from a purley spiritual perspective, is that a man facing execution has a set time to prepare to meet his Maker. He has opportunity to beg for forgiveness. He has opportunity – should he choose to take it – to do what must be done to try to save his immortal soul.

  3. Joe says:

    Now that I think about it, 1993 is about when Credo Home ceased to exist. Also worthy of mentioning, I am told the Oblates have no record of Omer ever working in the home.

  4. Joe says:

    Next court appearance : February 27 1pm rm 302. A second set of charges from a second victim have been added to the case….. I do not have the details on those charges.

  5. Sylvia says:

    Thanks Joe. I will check tomorrow to see if I can get more information on the new charges.

    Has anyone seen any media coverage? I don’t see anything, but perhaps it’s still too early? Or, perhaps just a case of the financial pinch which now prevents most media outlets from springing reporters free to cover these, as I call them, ‘revolving door’, court appearances?

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