The San Franciso Chronicle
Updated 11:45 a.m., Tuesday, June 26, 2012
- William Lynch arrives at a San Jose, Calif., courthouse on Monday, June 25, 2012. Santa Clara County Judge David Cena on Monday rejected motions for a mistrial in the case of Lynch, charged with assaulting a priest who he claims raped him decades ago. Lynch’s attorneys had sought a mistrial, accusing prosecutor Vicki Gemetti of withholding evidence and misconduct. Photo: Paul Sakuma / AP
SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) — A judge on Tuesday denied another defense request for a mistrial in the case of a California man accused of attacking a priest who he said molested him years earlier.
Santa Clara County Judge David Cena made the ruling a day after the priest, Jerold Lindner, invoked his right against self-incrimination and refused to testify further.
Cena also ruled Tuesday that three other alleged victims of Lindner will not be able to testify, according to the San Jose Mercury News (http://bit.ly/Mnfj0I).
The judge on Monday had ordered the jury to ignore Lindner’s previous testimony, in which he denied molesting alleged attacker William Lynch and his brother when the two were children. The Catholic Church has settled a civil lawsuit the brothers filed.
After Linder’s testimony, defense attorneys had called for a mistrial on the grounds that they would not have the opportunity to cross-examine Lindner.
Prosecutors have said they expected Lindner to lie about the sexual abuse claims during testimony but argued that’s no defense against assault charges.
Lynch’s attorney says lying on the witness stand could open the priest to a perjury charge.
Lynch, 44, pleaded not guilty to charges that he beat Lindner in 2010 at a retirement home for priests near San Jose. He has accused Lindner of raping him in 1975.
The trial began last week in a courtroom filled with dozens of spectators claiming to be sexual abuse victims of the Catholic Church. Several more demonstrated outside with signs decrying the church’s abuse scandal.