Nebraska Attorney General Releases Catholic Clergy Sexual Abuse Report

Nebraska Attorney General Doug Peterson releases a "Report on Clergy Sexual Abuse," which is a final run down on an investigation started in August of 2018.

That is when the Nebraska Department of Justice sent letters to the bishops of the three Nebraska Catholic Dioceses requesting all investigative files in their possession relating to child sexual abuse dating back to January 1st, 1978.

The Attorney General says the Nebraska Dioceses were asked for files relating to any claims of improper sexual conduct or sexual exploitation perpetrated by any person given authority by the dioceses to carry out church functions.

Incidents of child pornography or sexual communication with a minor were also included in the scope of the request.

All three dioceses submitted material responsive to the letters.

The Attorney General says the investigation resulted in credible accusations of sexual abuse and misconduct from 258 documented victims across the three dioceses in Nebraska.

The Lincoln Diocese had 97 victims, the Omaha Diocese had 158 victims, and the Grand Island Diocese had 3 victims.

The report says abuse was perpetrated by 57 church officials composed primarily of priests, deacons, and Catholic school teachers.

The report states the most troubling finding from the report is that on numerous occasions when there was an opportunity to bring justice to the victims, those in authority chose to place the reputation of the church above the protection of the children who placed their spiritual care in the hands of those in church authority.

A section of the report addresses each of the dioceses’ current practices for preventing and responding to such claims.

The "Report on Clergy Sexual Abuse" is available on the Attorney General’s website:

(Picture from Getty Images)

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