Saturday, April 15, 2006

More information on the Father Robinson Murder Trial

The Toledo Blade has an article this morning that outlines the statements of a woman who approached the Church wanting reimbursement for costs related to her therapy necessary because she claims she was abused by several priests several decades ago.

While the Blade article doesn't warn you that her claims are somewhat disturbing, I will warn you...Some of what is below might disturb you:

In the fall of 2003, the victim, now in her mid-40s, delivered a four-page typewritten letter to the Toledo diocese detailing her allegations in hopes that church officials would pay for her therapy bills.

In her testimony, she described being subjected to Satanic ceremonies in which priests placed her in a coffin filled with cockroaches, forced her to eat what she thought was a human eyeball, and penetrated her with a snake “to consecrate these orifices to Satan.”

She also alleged that the group of clerics killed an infant and a 3-year-old child, performed an abortion on her, and chopped up dogs during the rituals.

This was what opened up the cold case investigation into the death of Sister Margaret Ann Pahl because the woman claimed that Father Robinson was one of the priests involved in this. Father Robinson has not been convicted as being a part of that nor charged. Nor have any of the other priests that were claimed to have been involved identified.

John Connors, a former seminarian who retired after 25 years as a police officer, was hired by the Toledo diocese to investigate the woman’s allegations.

“I think she told the truth,” Mr. Connors said flatly this week. “I interviewed her, almost 20 hours’ worth, and I got a pretty good feel for it.”

No one has stated anything about a missing person's report on the three year old or the infant that was claimed to have been killed, nor has much more of John Connor's statement's been covered so I'm not exactly sure how or why he feels she was telling the truth. You would think if two children had also truly been murdered there would have been an attempt to resolve that situation rather than just a claim for monetary damages to reimburse someone for counseling. Even if a person had gone thru something that traumatic why would they focus just on money rather than trying to get some type of justice for a young child and a baby being murdered? That part of I'll never understand, as well as why no other priests were publicly identified.

Not to be graphic, but the whole concept of being penetrated by a snake is a common myth yet logically anyone who has handled a snake knows how difficult that is to even imagine as a possible event. I'm not going to present myself as an expert on Satanic rituals, however, a coffin full of cockroaches is not something you would normally expect, it is more along the lines of the television show Fear Factor which did do that back on March of 2002.

I'm not the only one that finds part of this statement as to be questionable. Religion News Blog has a post on this as well. People do take this seriously, most people do not probably remember that back in 1999 the Government of Kenya took such claims of ritual abuse seriously to the point of establishing a Presidential Commission on Devil Worship.

While slightly off topic, this brings up one of my main issues with the Catholic Church, their willingness to pay off people who claim to be victims which creates the assumption of guilt. While I'm sure in some cases some of these people really have been abused, I am just as certain that some have not been or not to the degree described. Even if every person who claims to have been abused was, you don't make it go away by paying people off, and if there are claims made like this one where children were murdered, something more should have been done. With that amount of killings and bloodshed involving babies, children, dogs, etc., surely even after all of these years some forensic evidence could be located.

This article by New House News contains some information the Blade article does not, including this:

The allegations of dark rituals have aroused interest, and antagonism as well.

"That's just a ... smokescreen," said Dave Davison, a retired Toledo police officer who was the first to see the body.

It is one of the few points of agreement between Davison and retired Deputy Chief Ray Vetter, who was in charge of detectives at the time.

Davison accuses the city's heavily Roman Catholic police department of colluding with the diocese.

Robinson was a suspect from the beginning -- probably the only other point on which the two former cops agree.

"This officer (Davison), he's come up with an awful lot of outlandish stuff," Vetter said in a telephone interview. He agreed there were no signs of any ritual and that Robinson emerged as the main suspect.

The suspect list narrowed down to Robinson "because we didn't have anyone else," and because of his close association with the dead nun, Vetter said. Deception by the priest also heightened suspicion.