In yet another example of the world-wide scandal involving clergy sexual abuse and molestation, the Cook County Sheriff has reopened an investigation of a Catholic priest just days after the Archdiocese of Chicago declared the abuse allegations unfounded. The investigation comes on the heels of another person that has suggested Rev. Michael W. O’Connell engaged in sexual misconduct. One of his accusers has asserted that he witnessed the priest behaving improperly at a local gym, while another alleges other sexual conduct while assigned to a local Parish.
The newest accuser to come forward is a former Illinois resident who recently spoke about the incident that he says happened years ago. The man did not report the incident at the time to the police or archdiocese and the priest has denied any and all wrongdoing.
Those who hold positions of power and trust in our society have a special responsibility to those that seek their help. Whether they are teachers, coaches, or members of the clergy, such people must be held accountable for wrongs committed to others who look to them for guidance.
Our experienced attorneys are also well aware that it often takes an abused person many years to come forward because of emotional issues or the fact that the abuse may have occurred when he or she was very young of age. Time limitations do apply to such cases however, so if you or a loved one has been injured, abused or molested by another, please contact the Law Offices of Sexner & Associates today for compassionate and confidential help and a no cost consultation about your situation at (312) 644-0444.
Source: Chicago Sun Times, “Cook County Sheriff reopens investigation of priest”, Francine Knowles, April 21, 2014.