We know more, but not all, about clergy abuse in Maryland. After the recent release of a nearly-four-year investigation and a 450-page report from Maryland’s Attorney General into clergy sex crimes and cover-ups in the Archdiocese of Baltimore, you might think that almost everything about this clergy sexual scandal across the state is now publicly available. You’d be wrong. Though Baltimore is the largest city in Maryland, and the Baltimore Archdiocese is the largest Catholic diocese in Maryland, did you know that the state includes two other Catholic dioceses too? Part of Maryland is in the Wilmington, Delaware Diocese. Another part of it is in the Washington DC Archdiocese.
No attorney general, grand jury, or independent source whatsoever has yet completed a probe of those entities. So much about clergy who commit and conceal child sex crimes in Maryland is still hidden from view. Then, there are the omissions and redactions in the AG’s report. The investigation revealed the names of 36 Baltimore Archdiocese abusers that are not included on its website’s roster of credibly accused priests and brothers. Sadly, this happens often. Catholic bishops claim they’re disclosing all of their predators’ names but actually only divulge a fraction of them. Another fact that we tend to forget is even the most aggressive and thorough investigation into clergy sex crimes and cover-ups inevitably comes up somewhat short. Most victims never report their abuse. Many church officials don’t put pen to paper when abuse is reported. When documents are written, many times, they are not kept. Many times those records are not turned over to investigators.
Barely two weeks ago, a similar report came out in Illinois. Despite spending almost five years on their investigation, Illinois Attorney General Kwame Raoul’s staff overlooked at least one already-outed, fairly high-profile predator priest, Fr. John D. Murphy. He’s been sued several times for child sexual abuse and has generated headlines for continuing to live in the Chicago area near schools without adequate supervision.
On the one hand, much about clergy abuse is still shrouded in secrecy in Maryland. Yet, even since the AG’s report came out, more details, names, and facts have emerged. A few savvy journalists, for instance, have stepped up and figured out the names of some wrongdoers whose identities, for legal reasons, continue to largely be shielded from public scrutiny. The Baltimore Sun has “revealed the names of five high-ranking Catholic archdiocese officials, referred to in the report as Officials A through E, who, according to the attorney general’s findings, helped cover up the abuse.” According to The Sun, “In recent weeks, others identified as being in the report have been put on leave from parish ministry, resigned from a hospital board, and had a transfer to a new parish canceled. They include:
- Frank T. Cimino Jr., the ex-director of the Maryland State Boychoir, resigned after he was identified as one of the predators whose names were redacted in the report. The choir “performs widely in the state, nationally and abroad” and “recorded several CDs and performed everywhere from the White House to the Vatican.” Cimino was also music minister of music at St. Thomas More Catholic Church in Northeast Baltimore and was accused of sexually abusing a boy there in the 1970s.
- Msgr. Richard “Rick” Woy (0fficial B” in the report) is currently pastor of St. Elizabeth Ann Seton in Crofton. The day after The Sun article named him, he resigned from the board of directors of the University of Maryland St. Joseph Medical Center. A previous effort to oust him from the Towson Hospital’s board after he was featured in the 2017 Netflix documentary “The Keepers” failed.
- Msgr. J. Bruce Jarboe (“Official A” in the report) was set to become head of a large parish in a suburb called Towson. But after The Sun identified him, church officials canceled the transfer. He’s now the pastor of St. Ann in Hagerstown.
- Rev. Thomas Hudson was an Episcopal minister and public schoolteacher who was active at St. John Catholic Church in Frederick.
We at Horowitz Law are grateful to reporters Liz Bowie, Jean Marbella, Lee O. Sanderlin, Jessica Calefati, Tim Prudente, Dylan Segelbaum, and Sabrina LeBoeuf and to the editors who support them and devoted their time, skills, and resources to digging deeper into this scandal. We are also grateful to those behind the scenes: the victims, witnesses, whistleblowers, experts, and church insiders – current and former – who played a role in helping to expose these proven, admitted, and credibly accused child molesting clerics.
Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims of sexual abuse in the Archdiocese of Baltimore. Our lawyers are now offering free legal consultations to discuss a potential lawsuit and your other options as a survivor of sexual abuse by priests and other employees of the Baltimore Archdiocese. Your chance to pursue legal action may soon be over. Most victims of abuse will never be able to recover damages if they miss the temporary window to file a lawsuit, so please contact us to discuss your case today. Call us at 888-283-9922 or send an e-mail to [email protected].