Youth minister sex abuse civil suit b...

Youth minister sex abuse civil suit begins

There are 139 comments on the Newsday story from Apr 16, 2007, titled Youth minister sex abuse civil suit begins. In it, Newsday reports that:

The Rev. Thomas Haggerty looked on sternly Monday morning as a lawyer accused him of turning a blind eye to a child molester who had been working as a youth minister at his East Meadow church.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at Newsday.

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tom massapequa

Bridgeport, CT

#1 Apr 16, 2007
This Bishop reminds me of Nixon who was so blind to the horrific facts of the tapes that he released them after listening to them and not hearing anything wrong. They are so use to hearing this filth, they think a jury is just going to overlook it and blame the victims which is usually what the church does. Dowd is an excellent lawyer and already the diocese looks like mince meat in his opening statements. My bet is the diocese settles before the jury comes in with a verdict. Oh, the diocese has these dummy corporations set up for each parish, but the Bishop is in complete control of each one of these corporations!!! Like the Jury is going to be dumb enough to overlook the sham corporate structure that gives the Bishop complete control of each parish. The defense must be kidding.
Hail Mary

Kansas City, MO

#2 Apr 16, 2007
When are Catholics going to realize that their God is still intact, but the institution that USED TO represent him, the Catholic Church, is corrupt to the core?
It is time to find your own peace with the Lord, and to find your own place to worship. Anyone who continues to give money to support this sinking ship of an institution is crazy. Note to the Catholic Church, your credibility is based on being able to live what you preach. Since you've proven that you can't do that, you no longer serve any purpose in society.
imus

AOL

#3 Apr 16, 2007
whats his race, got to be white?
Eolianharp

Edison, NJ

#4 Apr 16, 2007
Oh, the priest was a victim too. Yes, he was naughty. Ow, he needs to be spanked. "Come here, you nasty priest. Yes--take that candle--uh-huh--the long one."

One might think that in light of recent (cough) "events" the diocese might have been more watchful. If this priest was not complicit, he was at least sorely inattentive to his duties. It's amazing the level to which incompetence can rise in our society. Start here and end with the White House. Truly disturbing.
Publius

Baldwin, NY

#6 Apr 16, 2007
There are over a billion Catholics in the world - and morons with an axe to grind pick the absolute worst to whip and mock the whole bunch.

Maybe some of the geniuses who are posting and continue to post can learn a bit about sexual predators - THEY ARE MASTERS OF DECEPTION. That's how they get away with it.

I'm glad the Church is suffering for when they transferred known pedophiles. I'm glad hard justice is being done as well. It's right and good.

But the bigots and imbeciles who launch into their ignorant attacks on the whole Church, it's history, and all it does in the world is a farce. Same mental-type that blamed "the Jews" and "the Negro".

They are haters, and their opinions are worth zero.
get the facts

Albany, NY

#7 Apr 16, 2007
"Oh, the priest was a victim too. Yes, he was naughty. " --- he wasnt a priest so get your facts straight before you start making comments and untill this happens in your parish you have no clue what it feels like. and its not as easy to notice whats going on as you all like to believe it is.
Ex Oak Beacher

Akron, OH

#8 Apr 16, 2007
Publius wrote:
There are over a billion Catholics in the world - and morons with an axe to grind pick the absolute worst to whip and mock the whole bunch.
Maybe some of the geniuses who are posting and continue to post can learn a bit about sexual predators - THEY ARE MASTERS OF DECEPTION. That's how they get away with it.
I'm glad the Church is suffering for when they transferred known pedophiles. I'm glad hard justice is being done as well. It's right and good.
But the bigots and imbeciles who launch into their ignorant attacks on the whole Church, it's history, and all it does in the world is a farce. Same mental-type that blamed "the Jews" and "the Negro".
They are haters, and their opinions are worth zero.
Ditto
Ben

Commack, NY

#9 Apr 16, 2007
Who is the judge in this lawsuit? If you can answer, thanks.
Shame on you

Baldwin, NY

#11 Apr 16, 2007
St. Raphael's...home to Father Mott...one of the first priests accused of molestation in the 1990's....and home to Father Michael Hand...another molestor. ANyone see a pattern?
Healthy Skeptic

Flushing, NY

#12 Apr 16, 2007
Okay... something doesn't add up.

"Dowd said parents and other parishioners began to notice the inappropriate relationship between Maiello and the female plaintiff, and even held a meeting about it at the church." And allegedly, Fr. Tom ignored them. So they did -- nothing? They didn't go over his head to the diocese? They didn't call the police or the Child Protective Service? Sounds like they were as negligent as they accuse the priest of being. Did they even bother to express their concernes the girl's parents?

And speaking of the parents, "the family of Maiello's female victim knew Maiello well -- even vacationed with him -- yet never suspected he was harming their then-15-year-old daughter." I mean, c'mon, how many parents let their teen-aged daughters go on vacation with adult men? You mean to tell me that in spite of what they now claim was widespread suspicion about this guy, the girl's parents didn't think twice about letting this guy go on vacation with their daughter? Everyone else in the church apparently suspected this guy, but they didn't?

And for that matter, if the rest of the parents were soooo concerned and had made their concerns known to the priest, as Dowd claims, why did they let their kids keep attending the youth group? One would think that even without the priest acting on their complaints, they would have at least pulled their kids out of the program.

Something is fishy about all of this.
Sister Christian

Riverhead, NY

#13 Apr 16, 2007
Hail Mary wrote:
When are Catholics going to realize that their God is still intact, but the institution that USED TO represent him, the Catholic Church, is corrupt to the core?
It is time to find your own peace with the Lord, and to find your own place to worship. Anyone who continues to give money to support this sinking ship of an institution is crazy. Note to the Catholic Church, your credibility is based on being able to live what you preach. Since you've proven that you can't do that, you no longer serve any purpose in society.
No, I'm not a nun. I couldn't have said it better.
Grumpy

AOL

#14 Apr 16, 2007
I don't see why everyone is getting so upset? This has been happening for so long that it gets ignored. Catholics should take some responsibility for this and others. The signs were there, the people did nothing. Shame on all of you.
Sister Christian

Riverhead, NY

#15 Apr 16, 2007
Realist wrote:
You know, these little boys should stop wearing such sexy outfits. Maybe then they would stop getting raped by the priests.
I sincerely hope you are kidding. If not, you are a
sick puppy.
Concerned in EM

Jackson, NJ

#16 Apr 16, 2007
Shame on you wrote:
St. Raphael's...home to Father Mott...one of the first priests accused of molestation in the 1990's....and home to Father Michael Hand...another molestor. ANyone see a pattern?
Add to that the youth minister, Fr. Tom Saloy, who was convicted of a felony last December and is going to be sentenced for having child pornography on his computer. At the time of his arrest, prosecutors said Saloy stored 1,300 sexually explicit images of minors on his rectory computer.
This was all about the money! Haggerty hired Maiello because Maiello could put on fancy musicals and shows that would bring in money and pay for his salary. Haggerty was responsible and hid his head in the sand because he didnít want to know. He is a trained certified social worker and was a mandated reporter. If he went to the authorities, it would have caused a scandal in the parish and that is the last thing they want in the church. Scandals cause people to not give to the collection. But what does the Dioceses care, they have $300 million to take care of them. Oh, and the $300 Million is not the parishioners, itís the Bishops.
Healthy Skeptic

Flushing, NY

#17 Apr 16, 2007
Concerned in East Meadow wrote:
<quoted text>Haggerty was responsible and hid his head in the sand because he didnít want to know. He is a trained certified social worker and was a mandated reporter. If he went to the authorities, it would have caused a scandal in the parish and that is the last thing they want in the church.
That's assuming he knew. It's hard to believe this kid's story. Maiello's behavior was supposedly so obvious that everyone could see it. The "concerned parents" had meetings in the church, they expressed their concerns to the priest, etc., so they say. And then the victim's parents let her hang out with him and go on vacation with him?

Why wasn't Maiello's behavior as obvious to them as they expect it to have been to Haggerty? If they couldn't sense something was wrong with their daughter spending as much time with this man (which they most certainly knew anout), then how can they expect Haggerty to have known (much less, the bishop and others at the diocese, to whom Maiello was probably no more than a payroll number)?

It seems to me that at the very least, there's some contributory negligence on the parts of the girl's parents. Sure, employers are responsible for supervising their employees. But parents are responsible for supervising their children.

Maiello was guilty of a crime. There's no doubt about that. But for the girl's parents to try to blame the church for not properly supervising him, while at the same time knowing of, approving of, and even facilitating his contact with their daughter by sending them on vacations together, says to me that the parents were at least as negligent as the church was.
negligent pastor

Brooklyn, NY

#18 Apr 16, 2007
Well at least "Healthy Skeptic" is reading the articles. But some of the comments are a little harsh. So far the parents, and other parishioners have been blaimed by Skeptic as not taking enough of a stand. BUT Skeptic -- what do you think about the priest? You seem to defend him. It's easier to point fingers after the fact, but i wonder if you were in the same situation: what would you do? Have you known someone like Maiello? It is important to remember that Maiello was not an old, gray-haired man. Instead, he was only a few years older than the teens in the group, perhaps becoming more of a 'friend' than 'church offical'
Many people probably SUSPECTED, but how many do you think could actually prove it? I would think, those that could were only children themselves.
Most teenagers wouldn't have wanted to be 'pulled out of the program" as suggested. And most parents, would have thought to trust the safety of their children on church property in church run meetings.
Father Tom IS a defendent in the case because people TOLD him. He ignored it. Maybe people should have told the parents, but they choose to tell the priest. And the priest did nothing, shouldn't he be responsible?
Justice

Brooklyn, NY

#19 Apr 17, 2007
Realist wrote:
You know, these little boys should stop wearing such sexy outfits. Maybe then they would stop getting raped by the priests.
It sounds like little boys turn you on too!!!
Justice

Brooklyn, NY

#20 Apr 17, 2007
Why is it that a burglar is sentenced more time in prison then a pedophile?? Whats the difference they both stole something precious?? I think it's time to wake up and put these animals behind bars little longer than 2 years!! FOR RAPE OF A CHILD!! 2 YEARS WHERE'S THE JUSTICE FOR THE VICTIMS, AND THEY WONDER WHY THEY ARE STILL HAVING NIGHTMARES!!! HELLO ANYONE HOME!!!
help is on the way

AOL

#21 Apr 17, 2007
i will call sharton and jackson?????? oh sorry he was white. what the hell is wrong with you poeple, even in a holy place?
lbny

Mahwah, NJ

#22 Apr 17, 2007
Publius wrote:
There are over a billion Catholics in the world - and morons with an axe to grind pick the absolute worst to whip and mock the whole bunch.
Maybe some of the geniuses who are posting and continue to post can learn a bit about sexual predators - THEY ARE MASTERS OF DECEPTION. That's how they get away with it.
I'm glad the Church is suffering for when they transferred known pedophiles. I'm glad hard justice is being done as well. It's right and good.
But the bigots and imbeciles who launch into their ignorant attacks on the whole Church, it's history, and all it does in the world is a farce. Same mental-type that blamed "the Jews" and "the Negro".
They are haters, and their opinions are worth zero.
I totally agree to this statement above. I also agree with finding GOD within yourself and not Having to go into church other then to recieve the HOST . See many years ago I was told that i couldnt marry at the alter in church cause my husband had already been married, but for a few thousand dollars i could be married in the rectory, this fueled me to no end. and that is when i started to realize that GOD dwells within me and not one priest is going to tell me different. IF he was willing to marry in the rectory why couldnt i get married at the alter? I am totally aware of church rules but then he shouldnt have offered to take money for a different location within the same church. ISNT THE WHOLE CHURCH a show of GODS HOME? nope cause he lives within you, within your soul the very depths of your inner being.
never forget that.

these priest are just men, human beings. there is good and bad in every facet of life, dont hate , dont put everyone in the same catagory. its just not fair nor right. love each other and pray for the ones who are sick with this sort of disease. remember its always easy to love the people you like, but its not as easy to love the people who hurt you , so keep that in mind next time your in prayer. fogive the sinner, and yourself, but always remember a sickness is a sickness...... never lose your faith. God loves everyone. even the sick minded

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