John Manly Defeats Another Pedophile Priest in a California Courtroom

John C. Manly Newport Beach 2.jpg
Manly bags another one
John C. Manly--arguably California's best dirty priest hunter--scored another courthouse victory last week in Stockton when a jury sided with the Newport Beach lawyer's civil case against a priest who raped an alter boy 20 years ago.

A Modesto Bee article describes how some community members are upset with the verdict because they believe Michael Kelly, a longtime Catholic priest, is too sweet to rape and molest little boys.

Indeed, Kelly refuses to concede the illegal sexual conduct and, until the verdict, had the firm backing of church officials.

But Manly told the Bee that it's not surprising that people would like and defending offending priests.

"Pedophiles are nice people," he said in perhaps the best quote of the year. "That's how they get access to kids."

During his career, Manly has helped victims win more than $1 billion in settlements from sexually demented priests.

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54 comments
Jerry Trageser
Jerry Trageser

 Suffice it to say my wife and I are speechless this Easter Sunday. We cannot focus on the Mass underway because we cannot comprehend that Fr. Mike is not at the Altar in his parish in Lockeford, CA. Multitudes like ourselves have personal stories to tell of how this great Irish priest enriched our lives and our faith. As I have reported previously, Mike became part of us, the moment he was ordained and was assigned to our Lady of Fatima in Modesto. My wife was on the faculty of the school at the same time Mike brought soccer to the playground during recess. As if by magic soccer became a city-wide sport for the first time. Pardon me, if I ramble, but how could such a whirlwind ministry be brought to such a catastrophic end, seemingly without justification? I am not without extensive knowledge of what has happened in the Catholic Church here and throughout the world - particularly in Ireland. I m not without appreciation for the likelihood that clerical mismanagement might complicate Fr. Mike's case. While tracking this story in Stockon CA. from central PA., I have never for one moment doubted that Fr. Mike would be exonerated once the facts were examined. Fair or not, I was wrong and I am left with persevering in my prayers for this wonderful man.

 Gerard Trageser 

Joey Piscitelli
Joey Piscitelli

Fr. Michael Kelly, accused molester, who bombarded the Superior Court in Stockton, California very recently, along with dozens of his glassy eyed groupies and supporters all month, has skipped out! Of shock to no one with conscience, the pedophile priest was found guilty, by a 12 to 0 slam dunk by a jury trial- who took record short time to reach the guilty verdict without blinking.After the dramatic rehearsed court showing of his adamant, relentless cries of innocence and sheer martyrdom, Kelly has fled to Ireland, with a “tummy ache.” Yes, a “tummy ache”. No surprise there. He bolted like a coward, heading for his Irish homeland and ignoring his subpoena – and the law; like thousands of guilty catholic clergymen who preceeded him. Right when a rapidly dwindling few were thinking maybe, just maybe – the Catholic Church is starting to clean up their act, and become accountable….they throw the holy crap back in our face. This latest manure soaked pedo-story goes like this; Fr. Michael Kelly, pastor at St. Joachim’s in Lodi, California, (of course a place with children), was sued, along with the Diocese of Stockton for the usual clergy child abuse accusations. I don’t recommend you Google- “clergy abuse”, I don’t think they can handle over a trillion hits. But this case was a high profile case, because the victim, John Doe, was a highly decorated war veteran pilot from Afghanistan, who had “repressed memory”. The victim recalled later on in his life, that 25 years ago in the 1980’s, that Fr. Kelly molested him. A suit was filed recently against Fr. Kelly and the Diocese of Stockton for negligent child sex abuse. The Diocese of Stockton is by no means a stranger to rancid clergy abuse cases and cover-ups. Flocks of Fr. Kelly’s devout sheeples, emerged in droves to support the accused molester, which is all too typical in these cases, and they were belligerent, obnoxious, and ready to draw blood for their cause. The saber toothed sheeples relentlessly spewed venom at the child abuse victims advocates who appeared at the court; as Fr. kelly’s groupies idolized the guilty cleric blindly. Those sheeples blinders are probably well worn out in the diocese of Stockton by now.The trial took two weeks, and the Catholic Church produced dozens of well paid psychological experts to refute “repressed memory”, and to belittle and rip apart the victim, without mercy. After counting their money, the church’s “experts” apparantly disappeared – most probably in anticipation for the next circus; and the next check from the church for their all too familiar, babbling, rehearsed expert testimonials. Fortunately, the victim was strong, intelligent, and had the truth on his side- something the Catholic Church Molestation Machine constantly seems to overlook in these cases. After all, the church has enjoyed the dodging of clergy abuse convictions for centuries, it’s going to take a while for reality to to completely set in. After the jury guilty verdict, the second phase of the trial was supposed to start. This means that the Diocese was going to take the stand, and the jury would determine just how negligent the diocese was for allowing Fr. Kelly to be around children, and decide on an award for the plaintiff. But Fr. Kelly, unbeknownst to Bishop Blaire of Stockton, suddenly vanished! Wink. Wink.The disgraced priest left a teary eyed note to the Bishop, and said basically that he bolted because he had a belly ache, and he felt sorry for himself. Imagine that. And apparently he didn’t apologize to the victim, he spewed the usual “I’m the victim priest” letter of self indulgent pity, and completed the clerical lack of remorse routine like a pro. But the Bishop, being obviously educated about clergy pedophiles reputations by now, kept the good bye letter in tact, but must have forgot to keep the priest in tact. Wink. Wink. Fr. Kelly was supposed to take the stand again shortly, to face his accusers attorney, and now the Bishop of Stockton has to make sad Catholic hierarchy faces and apologize. But Bishop Blaire and the diocese are well seasoned veterans now after being sued regularly, and losing; and the diocese fortunately has plenty of well scripted comments in it’s files to accommodate every negligent occasion.

Michael Word
Michael Word

I knew Father Kelly as a child.  He was a family friend, and he was often invited to our house for dinner because he was a wonderful priest.  He was caring, and kind - always quick with a song on his guitar and a magic trick with a deck of cards.  I will say this unequivocally -- he never abused me.  He never abused my brother.  He never abused hundreds of children whose lives he was a part of.  Yet this "priest hunter" (as apt a term as one could ever find for Mr. Manly) finds one person with "repressed memories" that did not come to light until 20 years after they supposedly happened, and uses this person to "score another victory" against priests on his way to over $1 billion in settlements.  Nevermind the fact that the Court refused to allow two polygraph tests into evidence that showed that Father Kelly was innocent.  And nevermind the fact that the Court allowed evidence of a different priest's abuse to come in and taint the facts.

I've followed the facts of this case and have seen the actions of Mr. Manly.  I have no doubt that Mr. Manly may have prosecuted some priests who were actually guilty of horrible crimes.  But I must question his integrity and intentions in this case.  Nobody seems to mention the fact that Mr. Manly is likely working on a contingency basis and will be receiving 30% to 40% of the "more than $1 billion in settlements" he has obtained - a fact that speaks to Mr. Manly's greed rather than a righteous crusade for justice.  Mr. Manly's prosecution of an innocent and good man in this case based on flimsy evidence and appeals to emotion, rather than the facts, is truly horrible.  After hearing of Mr. Manly's actions and the outcome in this case, I must say that for the first time in my life, I'm ashamed to be an attorney myself.

Finally, shame on the author, R. Scott Moxley, for his trivial treatment of such a serious matter. 

Streets
Streets

Hey Mitch,  here's your ordinary White Guy Child Molester you've been asking for...........

Disgusted Catholic
Disgusted Catholic

To members of the public and the faithful in the pews.... John Manly is one of the most honest and ethical clergy sex abuse and/or attorneys one will find.  Do your homework people.

Considering that under the watch of the  the OC Sheriff, OC District Attorney, OC Board of Supervisors, former Diocese of Orange Communications Director Tom Fuentes who is spent many years as the OC GOP boss, and the questionable attorneys licensed to practice law that simultaneously represent government agencies, religious institutions, insurance companies and public school districts, all possessing potential and adverse interests, without full disclosure to the public, any victim of a crime has little to none chance that a criminal report regarding OC's politically connected employees and/or sexual predators will be investigated. 

For those who still pledge loyalty to a corrupt criminal and civil process in Orange County, California, do your homework at www.occourts.org.  How many sexual predators employed by the Diocese of Orange were actually criminally prosecuted?  Very few considering how many molested and destroyed the lives of children.  Former Catholic priest Denis Lyons, who was represented by the infamous criminal defense attorney Gary Pohlson, recently pled guilty to lewd and lascivious conduct against a minor child; however, Lyons, his attorneys and the Diocese of Orange have DENIED for decades that Lyons sexually abused minor children... then suddenly, Lyons pleads guilty.  I realize that many praise the OC District Attorney's office for prosecuting Denis Lyons -- for me, not impressed.

Why did Mon. Michael Harris, Jeffrey Andrade, Larry Stukenholz, Bernie Balsis, Michael Pecharich, Henry Perez, John Lenihan, Zigmund Widera, Eleutario Ramos, Gus Krumm and many others, escape criminal prosecutions?  Sorry, do not buy the "excuse" that a statute of limitation expired.... we all know many crimes were reported long before a statute of limitation expired and someone in big places aided and abetted a decades-long cover-up. 

Do the math people.... without attorneys like Manly and courageous victims and their families, Orange County, California, would be the PEDOPHILE CAPITAL OF THE WORLD! 

Johnthebaptist
Johnthebaptist

Roger Mahoney declined to provide law enforcement with records of his pedophile employees and no one had the balls to haul his ass into court or put him in jail until he decided to do so. The Catholic pedophile association baffles me, why can their employees avoid stiff prison time for molesting children ?  If employees of a major corporation were found guilty of child molestation they would be in prison, not the catholic church though.They throw enough money at the victim to shut them up. All you catholics who throw your money at the church each sunday. Do you realize how much of that is spent protecting pedophile, child molesting employees? Remember, a priest is nothing more than an employee, trained to do a job. They have no magical powers or connection to a higher power more than you do, quit worshipping these scoundrels. That stupid pope sits around in his funny hat preaching while his employees molest the congregation. When is enough ,enough?

Deep Sounding
Deep Sounding

It's not often that I say something nice about a lawyer: You seem like an upstanding, caring human being, Mr. Manly. Thank you.

Gary
Gary

Mr Manly in the O.C cases went way beyond being crooked. He would ask us victims if we knew of any other  " possible  victims " or witnesses and he would go out and speak to them  then all of a sudden he had them some signed on for a lawsuit..  An Attorney looking for " victims " is illegal.  

janesoutham
janesoutham

There's no one practicing law in the United States by the name of Michael Word. As you claim to be an attorney and yet you are attacking another attorney for doing his job as an attorney, which is to win his case for his client, then you need to use your real name here. You sir, are no lawyer.

janesoutham
janesoutham

Mr. Word:

Have you not been reading the papers? Other victims have come forward over the years. The Calaveras Sheriff's office is investigating as we speak an incident where a boy was sexually assaulted in 2000 at St. Andrew's in San Andreas. This boy was also ten years old, and he was violated in the same manner as the victim in the civil suit. This case is not one of repressed memories.

You are also aware, are you not that the victim who won the civil suit first went to the police but was told his case was out of statute? What recourse did he have?.

Word is that ANOTHER victim has just come forward within the last week, from another church.

Just because you and your brother weren't molested, doesn't mean others weren't.  Predators pick their victims very carefully. Very often they choose boys from divorced homes, or where there's an absentee, distant father, or where there's alcoholism. If the family is functioning in a healthy way, then a predator like Kelly, Father Paul Shanley and John Geoghan ( look em up) won't prey on a boy from there, because he knows the boy would speak up. 

I would recommend that you read a book called "Our Fathers" by Newsweek David France, about the pedophile priests scandals in Boston. In that book, the priests like Geoghan and Shanley are charming, play cards with the kids; coach them at soccer. Then they moved in for the kill.

I have a REALLY hard time believing you are  a lawyer.  Ever heard of lawyer Eric Macleish, then of Greenberg Traurig in Boston? He was THE go-to lawyer for victims of priests in cases where the criminal statute of limitations had run out. He was involved in far more cases than Manly. He held press conferences on CNN to announced that he'd discovered that Father Shanley had been a member of NAMBLA. He deposed and went after Cardinal Law for shuffling the predator priests from parish to parish. . Mcleish won more than Manly in his work and he also won many awards for his work, as well as the admiration of many victims. He did it because like Manly, he was able to put himself in the victims' shoes. Yes, he won millions, but making money and caring about victims are not mutually exclusive. You as a lawyer should know that.

The fact that you are criticizing Manley for making money is just a joke. Look at lawyer Mitch Garabedian in Boston, another elder statesman in Boston for victims of priests. It was just a week ago that he won a $30 million dollar settlement. I am willing to wager he's come close to winning a billion, if not more as well, but he has the utmost respect within the legal community and victims' communities.

All lawyers make money off their cases.

I don't believe for one second you are a lawyer.

Bruce Reynard
Bruce Reynard

1) Just because Kelly never abused you doesn't mean that he isn't a child molester. Child molesters don't molest every child they come into contact with. In fact, many have a "type" that they are attracted to.

2) Intelligent child molesters ingratiate themselves to parents, local officials, other authorities with clout. They do this so that people (like you) will stand up for them and be staunch, adamant defenders. As an adult victim of such crimes, I have to say that your description of Kelly bringing out a guitar and magic tricks to entertain is VERY creepy, and doesn't help your argument.

3) You were with your brother 100% of the time, and can say without a doubt that he was not molested? Is this what you're saying? As an adult, I have told people that were close to me that I was not molested as a child. This is not true, and I am deliberately lying to avoid the discussion when I do it. This does not mean that it didn't happen.

4) Which hundreds of children that he was in contact with did he not molest? You can confirm with certainty that each of them were not molested? This would be very helpful to Kelly's case... maybe you can testify for him with your corroborating negative witness! Does this number include ALL of the hundreds of children that he's had contact with? Even better! 

5) Followup to #4: If Kelly has been good around hundreds of children, but maybe molested just one boy, it's alright... right? How about two? Where is the line below which you think a little bit of molesting is OK, as long as YOU didn't see it?

6) Polygraph is NOT an accepted science, and you know it. There are plenty of very well documented cases of false positives AND false negatives. The nice thing about the defense taking a non-court ordered polygraph is that a negative result can just be ignored, and never presented to the public, whereas a false positive can be used to bolster public perception.

7) Polygraph does not show that a person is innocent, only that they do or do not show certain common but not universal biofeedback indicators of stress when answering questions. But you know THAT too, since you're a attorney.

8) Are you going to be able to get over the "shame" that you're feeling as an attorney? Will you be going to work on Monday, or will you be home making a difficult career decision? How very stressful for you.

Gary
Gary

I was a victim and I settled with O.C and L.A.. The part that I'm upset is that he would divulge information to the victims to up their case. When I did my initial interview with him I gave him info on the priest and  he had told me that he didn't even know what I had told him and that he already had other victims from the same priest. When my info was verified then all of a sudden that info was entered into other victims questionaire and pamphlets. as they knowing that ... That's illegal.

janesoutham
janesoutham

Wait a minute!! You said, "He would ask us victims if we knew each other..." If you were really a victim, you would have been happy to have been asked that and happy to cooperate with him.

I am going to say you are not a victim. 

R. Scott Moxley
R. Scott Moxley

An attorney asking about other potential victims is odd to you? Really?

janesoutham
janesoutham

It is not illegal for an attorney to look for victims. All lawyers look for victims. Attorneys speak to reporters so that they will get the word out. The only way victims are going to find out there are other victims is through the media.

Perhaps  you might want to think about what it's like to be in a victim's shoes. You are attacking the wrong person. Your anger should be on the pedophile who was just found liable for raping a boy: Michael Kelly.

Dpwrod1
Dpwrod1

Oh my goodness you are diluted.  My name is David Word I am not a lawyer, my brother Mike, who had posted earlier is however.

Dave Word
Dave Word

Oh my goodness you are diluted.  I'd just listed the reasons Jane Southam - or is that your real name? Are you even a person?  I doubt it.

My name is David Word I am not a lawyer, my brother Mike, who had posted earlier is however.

Dave Word
Dave Word

I also wanted to mention that the vast majority of Manly's cases in the Priest Abuse arena have been tried under civil court rather than criminal court, where the burden of proof is dramatically less demanding - a fact that I'm sure added to the dramatic courtroom antics that resulted in Father Kelly's conviction. 

... also just noticed Manly lives in well-to-do Newport Beach, CA...huh.  No way, he wouldn't be doing this just for money - He's doing it for the good of the public - God Bless 'em.

Dave Word
Dave Word

Hi Bruce,

Follow up to your #3) I am Michael's brother David and I can attest that Father Kelly never abused me, hurt me or feel uncomfortable in any way.

And a follow up to #5)  In this case Father Kelly was prosecuted on another "accepted science" of repressed memory - This after Manly had beat the bushes of thousands of previous and current parishioners in Stockton and elsewhere to find another meal-ticket for his supposed crusade.  I'm sure the large payout promised may have jogged his client's memory.

- Dave

Dr D
Dr D

Hey Gary,  In case no one said it yet, I'm sorry.  Sorry we let you get in harm's way to begin with.  Stupidly, we thought we could trust them and him. They've spent 2000 years telling us it was ok and we bought it smiling like idiots.

BUT, the attorney was already investigating certain known facts when interviewing you for the first time. Prior to becoming aware of you personally, your general locale, age group, gender and other facts common to the abused group, helped to identify you as a potential victim. Once you were identified and interviewed, certain other previously undetected potential character traits of the group appeared. It's only logical for the investigator to attempt to include the latest information available to him in further identifying potential victims. In whatever minor way, previous data helped find and validate you. 

I don't know the case or the offending documents but I suspect some of the info on the questionnaire struck similar chords in others, while other horrors were yours alone. And sent out there for the world to peruse like a shopping list.  Who wouldn't be upset after surviving your ordeal. That's pretty painful and wrong all over again. I see that and I'm sorry it went that way.

BUT, what other choice did Manly have? They couldn't credit you personally could they? Gary at 1234 main street likes green socks, do you? How much more harmful would that have been? Sounds like they felt they had to ask and bruised you even further in the process of trying to protect your identity, while still encouraging others like you to come forward.  That's a pretty tall order and I'm sorry the process failed you.

BUT, but the good you did by contributing to the demise of this monster and all of them in general is still reverberating today. It's a minor salve but know you are protecting others and for that, we thank you. 

KNOW that there is no possible way I would ever entrust the care of my children to one cloaked as a priest. I know to avoid them because of brave people like you Gary and Mr. Manly, mistakes, warts and all. Thank you and we're sorry.

janesoutham
janesoutham

Sorry, not buying your story at all. I think you're a "plant" designed to discredit Manly.If you were truly a victim, you would be very grateful for the work he has done to help victims... 

janesoutham
janesoutham

Do you mean "deluded?" instead of "diluted?" You are DEFINITELY not a lawyer either. Or a scholar.

janesoutham
janesoutham

Do you mean "deluded?" instead of "diluted?" You are DEFINITELY not a lawyer either. Or a scholar.

janesoutham
janesoutham

Mr Michael and David "Word" : If you had bothered to look at my comments above you would see that I addressed them to the "attorney"  Michael Word. He is not an attorney, and neither are you. 

Bill T.
Bill T.

Twist words much?  You might look into the skill of "reading for content". What Gustavo said was the Manly haters were hilarious, not that Kelly was convicted for his actions.

janesoutham
janesoutham

There was nothing about it that was wrongfully convicted in a civil court of law. Shame  on you for pretending to be two people AND impersonating a lawyer ( not very well, either- see grammar and spelling errors>)

Bruce Reynard
Bruce Reynard

Here's what the APA has to say about forgotten memories and the creation of false memories:

"What we do know is that both memory researchers and clinicians who work with trauma victims agree that both phenomena occur "

"Some clinicians theorize that children understand and respond to trauma differently from adults. Some furthermore believe that childhood trauma may lead to problems in memory storage and retrieval. These clinicians believe that dissociation is a likely explanation for a memory that was forgotten and later recalled."

"It's important to state that there is a consensus among memory researchers and clinicians that most people who were sexually abused as children remember all or part of what happened to them although they may not fully understand or disclose it. "

Conversely, they say this about polygraph:

"Most psychologists agree that there is little evidence that polygraph tests can accurately detect lies."

" There is no evidence that any pattern of physiological reactions is unique to deception. An honest person may be nervous when answering truthfully and a dishonest person may be non-anxious. Also, there are few good studies that validate the ability of polygraph procedures to detect deception. As Dr. Saxe and Israeli psychologist Gershon Ben-Shahar (1999) note, "it may, in fact, be impossible to conduct a proper validity study." "

"Evidence indicates that strategies used to "beat" polygraph examinations, so-called countermeasures, may be effective. Countermeasures include simple physical movements, psychological interventions (e.g., manipulating subjects' beliefs about the test), and the use of pharmacological agents that alter arousal patterns."

"Most psychologists and other scientists agree that there is little basis for the validity of polygraph tests. Courts, including the United States Supreme Court (cf. U.S. v. Scheffer, 1998 in which Dr.'s Saxe's research on polygraph fallibility was cited), have repeatedly rejected the use of polygraph evidence because of its inherent unreliability. Nevertheless, polygraph testing continues to be used in non-judicial settings, often to screen personnel, but sometimes to try to assess the veracity of suspects and witnesses, and to monitor criminal offenders on probation. Polygraph tests are also sometimes used by individuals seeking to convince others of their innocence"

Dave Word
Dave Word

I'll tell you what Bruce - I don't give a fig for Manly or folks like him.  There is very little difference to what he does and what the typical bottom-of-the-barrel, sleaze-ball, ambulance chasing lawyer does.  Best part for him is: he'll find support no matter where he goes, because - let's be honest - Catholic priests are not the most popular folks right now.  So what if a few innocent priests like Father Kelly get wrongly convicted along the way?  Most of them are guilty, right?

And please explain to me how I am being deceptive?  I am simply describing the very difficult burden of proof that a civil case (50% and a feather) requires for the defendant compared to a criminal case (99% reasonable doubt).And yes, I did describe a very incompetent attorney - you happened to interpret that one accurately.  One that was not able to appropriately anticipate the gravity of the situation or  the attorney he was up against.

Bruce Reynard
Bruce Reynard

Yes, yes. We're clear that you're jealous of Manly's success.

Your point about civil vs. criminal court is irrelevant. It was the victims ONLY ALTERNATIVE. You know this to be true, You are deliberately being deceptive about the matter.

Sounds like you're saying Kelly's attorney is incompetent: didn't manage to get your precious polygraph tests in, only allowed a few people to testify "because the jury would appreciate it" Are you saying that his attorney is incompetent?

What does "Talking" to the perpetrator have to do with anything? It proves absolutely nothing other than the fact that the man surrounded himself with gullable fools, who foolishly babble about the very behaviors that classic pedophiles exhibit in order to groom victims and supporters.

janesoutham
janesoutham

A "short trial"? What are you talking about?  It went on for two months!! That's very long for this kind of trial.

janesoutham
janesoutham

You keep ignoring the fact that at least four other victims have come forward. None of them have repressed memories.

janesoutham
janesoutham

I don't know about your case, but I do know that Joe Sadek can't ask two of his male siblings about whether they were molested, because they died untimely deaths.

Many, many victims of pedophiles die too young- of suicide, or alcoholism, or by car or motorcycle crashes. I know of a molestation victim in the Dr. William Ayres case who drank himself to death at age 44. His therapist later told me that whenever she asked him about the abuse, he couldn't handle it and would get falling down drunk, despite numerous stays in rehab.

Dave Word
Dave Word

Bruce, with respect to the history and validity of Lie Detector tests, I could say the same this about your obsession with the accuracy of Repressed Memory which Father Mike was almost exclusively convicted on. Aside from that, my point about Civil Court vs. Criminal Court is that Civil court is based upon a "Preponderance of Evidence".  The judge in Father Kelly's case had read the most liberal definition of "50% plus a feather" to the jury.  This was from a list of three definitions, the other two being much more fair to the defendant. 

For criminal court (the kind that your hero lawyer John C. Manly avoids) the evidence must be "beyond a reasonable doubt" or about 99% sure.  That makes it much more difficult to get at the money - we can't have that.  Especially when we have house mortgages to pay for in Maui.  Especially when it opens the diocese up to civil and criminal penalties - JACKPOT!!!I am certainly not a lawyer and don't pretend to be one.  But I know when a man has been railroaded - and this one is obvious.  Father Kelly's lawyer(s) were not even in the same ballpark as Manly (1 BILLION in court winnings!)  Kelly's lawyer had a extensive list of supporter willing to go to bat for him (like me), and they put a paltry THREE people on the stand in order to make it a short trial - thinking the jury would appreciate the brevity.  Furthermore, you speak of being so sure that Father Kelly is guilty.  Based on what - the lopsided TRIAL?  Your own biased experience with abuse?  Have you ever TALKED with the man?  Have you ever spent time with him?  I certainly have and so has my brother, along with dozens of friends and hundreds of other parishioners.Bottom line is:  I wasn't there with the Defendant and Father Kelly when they were in contact and NEITHER WERE YOU!  Neither were any of these armchair jurists. Is it *possible* that something inappropriate occurred?  Sure.   Is it also possible that a lawyer, motivated by greed, convinced a past parishioner of his supposed repressed memory?  Definitely.All told and based and what I know in my heart, I believe the man is not guilty.  The jury here got it wrong.  Period.

Dave Word
Dave Word

Bruce, with respect to the history and validity of Lie Detector tests, I could say the same this about your obsession with the accuracy of Repressed Memory which Father Mike was almost exclusively convicted on. 

Aside from that, my point about Civil Court vs. Criminal Court is that Civil court is based upon a "Preponderance of Evidence".  The judge in Father Kelly's case had read the most liberal definition of "50% plus a feather" to the jury.  This was from a list of three definitions, the other two being much more fair to the defendant. For criminal court (the kind that your hero lawyer John C. Manly avoids) the evidence must be "beyond a reasonable doubt" or about 99% sure.  That makes it much more difficult to get at the money - we can't have that.  Especially when we have house mortgages to pay for in Maui.  Especially when it opens the diocese up to civil and criminal penalties - JACKPOT!!!I am certainly not a lawyer and don't pretend to be one.  But I know when a man has been railroaded - and this one is obvious.  Father Kelly's lawyer(s) were not even in the same ballpark as Manly (1 BILLION in court winnings!)  Kelly's lawyer had a extensive list of supporter willing to go to bat for him (like me), and they put a paltry THREE people on the stand in order to make it a short trial - thinking the jury would appreciate the brevity.  Furthermore, you speak of being so sure that Father Kelly is guilty.  Based on what - the lopsided TRIAL?  Your own biased experience with abuse?  Have you ever TALKED with the man?  Have you ever spent time with him?  I certainly have and so has my brother, along with dozens of friends and hundreds of other parishioners.Bottom line is:  I wasn't there with the Defendant and Father Kelly when they were in contact and NEITHER WERE YOU!  Neither were any of these armchair jurists. Is it *possible* that something inappropriate occurred?  Sure.   Is it also possible that a lawyer, motivated by greed, convinced a past parishioner of his supposed repressed memory?  Definitely.All told and based and what I know in my heart, I believe the man is not guilty.  The jury here got it wrong.  Period. 

Dave Word
Dave Word

I'd just listed the reasons Jane Southam - or is that your real name? Are you even a person?  I doubt it.  My name is David Word I am not a lawyer, my brother Mike is however.

janesoutham
janesoutham

As stated, I know of no other civil lawyer in this country who represents victims of pedophile priests like Jeff Anderson in Minnesota; Mitch Garabedian and Eric Macleish of Boston( the top lawyers in this area in the country)- who haven't made money from their civil suits.  Like the rest of us, they have families to feed, tuition and mortgages to pay.

Thanks in particular to Eric Macleish, the Catholic Church in Boston had to give up its "secret" files on predator priests they were protecting. Because of Eric Macleish and Mitch  Garabedian, Cardinal Law was forced to step down for covering up peophile priests for decades. Garabedian, Macleish, Anderson and many others work on these cases for sometimes almost a decade. They can't afford to do this pro bono.You don't sound like you know anything about the history of civil suits against pedopile priests in this country. There's lots out there on this subject, so start reading up the subject.

janesoutham
janesoutham

Did it ever occur to you that Kelly was rightfully convicted in a civil court of law?

The Cavaleras Sheriff's office is investigating another sexual assault by Kelly that occurred in 2000. Did it ever occur to you that law enforcement might think he was rightfully convicted in a civil court of law, and hence they have opened a criminal investigation?

janesoutham
janesoutham

Um Dave, again, have you not read the news stories? The victim in the civil case went to the police first, but was told his case was outside the statute of limitations. He could't proceed with a criminal case against Kelly. Please do your reading before repeating this.

janesoutham
janesoutham

Why was it wrongfully convicted in a civil court of law? Evidence, please? And are you aware that there are several other victims who have come forward (one very recently) and that none of them had repressed memories of the assault.

If you are a lawyer, then I think you need to write under your real name.

janesoutham
janesoutham

Ever look at how much Boston lawyers Eric Mcleish and Mitch Garabedian have many from pedophile priests cases over the years? A lot more than Manly, but they have the respect of their peers in the legal profession,victims and their families . Helping victims and making money as a lawyer are not mutually exclusive. The good lawyers know that.

What has the fact that Manly's cases been tried in civil court rather than criminal have to do with anything? He's not a prosecutor; he's a civil lawyer. As you say you are a lawyer ( which I don't believe, because you are making comments about other lawyers that no lawyers would ever make) then you would know that MANY of these victims' cases fall outside the statute of limitations. Did it ever occur to you that the positive side about filing a civil suit is that it gets press, and then there's a possibility that IN-STATUTE victims will come forward, which will then get the police to open a CRIMINAL INVESTIGATION?

That's what happened in the Dr. William Ayres case- a far higher profile case than the Kelly one.

A male victim of Ayres filed a complaint with the San Mateo PD in 2002. But as his case was outside the statute of limitations, he decided to go the civil route. Ayres settled with the victim. As a result of the news stories about the civil case, many other victims of Ayres came forward. The fact that there were so many victims of Ayres who had seen the stories about the civil suit who then came forward RESULTED IN A CRIMINAL INVESTIGATION which resulted in an arrest of Ayres. This happens time and time and time again after civil suits have been filed. New victims come forward who fall within the statute of limitations, which results in a successful police investigation and arrest.

As a lawyer you should know that. Call up any police department and they can tell you stories of how civil suits helped them find victims for the criminal case.

If you're a lawyer, then I have a bridge to sell you.

Bruce Reynard
Bruce Reynard

Oh. One more thing: On your obsessions with "Lie Detector" tests: I said this before, but you ignored that too, and then just reposted the comment, so I'll just repost my comment:

Polygraph is NOT an accepted science, and you know it. There are plenty of very well documented cases of false positives AND false negatives. The nice thing about the defense taking a non-court ordered polygraph is that a negative result can just be ignored, and never presented to the public, whereas a false positive can be used to bolster public perception.

Bruce Reynard
Bruce Reynard

I'm not a lawyer. I'm an adult victim of child molestation in a non-church related case. I'm a practicing Christian, and have no particular axe to grind with churches. I DO definitely have frustration with people who blindly support child molesters, and especially when they hang desperately onto "facts" that are commonly exploited by child molesters and their attorneys, as most of the people supporting Kelly have done.

1) Repressed Memory: while you may not trust it, it IS a very well documented feature of PTSD. You're not going to argue that away. It's just a fact. There are also nuances to "repressed memory" that make it either very credible, or somewhat less credible. Without looking at psych report details of this case, I can't judge either way. In the absence of other people claiming abuse, the case would seem more difficult, but in reality (not JUST what the jury was presented with, but also with outside facts that we know, Kelly has had other accusers. This tends to lend much more credence to the case as a whole. (Not to mention the fact that the jury DID indeed feel that there was enough to go on.)

Kelly has prior complaints on file with his church. Contrast this to teachers and clergy in our church who I know well, who have taught for decades, who have ZERO complaints of this nature. In spite of how you may feel about people with an axe to grind and who may simply be lying to get cash or revenge for some non-sexual abuse related situation, it is VERY UNUSUAL for ANY person to have sexual abuse complaints against them. Not unheard of, of course, but very unusual.

2) "Lucrative Civil Court" is patently offensive. It disgusts me to hear victims whose lives and families lives have been destroyed, people have committed violent suicide over, be told that they are only after the Ca$h.

I said this before, and you just turned a deaf ear. I'll say it again:

Civil cases are the only recourse for the desperate in many of these cases. The attorney may or may not be a gold digger, but the victim is on their last gasp for validation, and people like you can ALWAYS be relied upon to come out of the woodwork and put them down. In this matter, I DO have an axe to grind, but it is legitimate, and people making this claim don't deserve the time that I spend trying to make it clear. It's really a disgusting claim, especially since the monetary award will not undo or fix the suffering.

3) Manly's profit motive is irrelevant with respect to the damage done by child molesters. Fixate on it all you want - It just demonstrates that you don't understand or care about the gravity of this kind of case.

4) I stated this before but you ignored it too... The fact that Kelly DIDN'T molest some children even given opportunity is irrelevant. You might just not have been his type, or he may have felt that you or your parents were more likely to act on abuse. Molesters become experts at profiling and grooming. You don't have to like it, but it's true, and well documented by the APA.

5) If Kelly molested even one child, then the efforts that he has done to be an "asset" to the community were likely done for the very reason that he knew he needed dupes to support him when the time came. If he did do this crime (as a jury of 12 has unanimously found to be true) then his "caring" and his "calling" are lies and worthless.

6) Of course I can accept the possibility that Kelly is wrongly convicted. It has happened.

I'm far less blinded by my circumstances than you are by yours. 

You're so blinded, you say things that YOU can't prove like: "never abused my brother or myself or our friend(s) Joe Sadek or his 5 siblings" "his life and saving have been ruined based on some pretty crappy evidence" and you even said: "OK Bruce I may be wrong but you seem like a lawyer who has a particular axe to grind; possibly due to some abuse in your past. If you were abused - I'm terribly sorry, but I guess I'd rather not put the "Kelly case aside for a moment" "

My statement that followed was not about dismissing the Kelly case, but talking about WHY civil cases are persued more frequently, but you dismissed my point before even reading it because you're so blinded.

 YOU refuse to see that it's a possibility that he's factually guilty.

I didn't speak out about this case until a jury of 12 concluded that they're convinced that he's guilty. Since then, we've heard about documented prior claims, other victims coming forward, etc... 

I'm confident that in THIS case, the jury was correct in their decision.

Your desperate grasping, implying that I am "blind" because of my "own circumstances" is pretty off-putting, and frankly is just another common tactic used by molesters and their lawyers.

It's not winning you any points in your argument, especially when you're demonstrating the the very blindness that you're going on and on about.

Dave Word
Dave Word

How is the destruction of a man's life "HILARIOUS" gustavoarellano? So I Guess this question applies to you who would sentence a man based on your biases or personal circumstances:"Can you even accept the *possibility* that Father Kelly, the defendant in THIS particular case, was wrongly convicted in a Civil court of law, or are you so blinded by your own circumstances or your biases that this cannot be an option?"  

Dave Word
Dave Word

OK Bruce I may be wrong but you seem like a lawyer who has a particular axe to grind; possibly due to some abuse in your past.  If you were abused - I'm terribly sorry, but I guess I'd rather not put the "Kelly case aside for a moment" as that is the reason I responded to this so-called news article.  Here's the facts in THIS case:

- In THIS case the evidence was based on "repressed memory" and testimony from unrelated Priest abuse cases.

- THIS case was handled in the more lucrative Civil Court (rather than the more stringent Criminal court) where the plaintiff has the burden of disproving the facts and claims asserted in the complaint  Unrelated abuse cases and the over-the-top dramatics would not have been allowed by any lawyer or judge worth his salt in a criminal court proceedings.  I'm not sure of the point in your ramblings about what and why the statute of limitations ran out.

- The prosecuting lawyer in THIS case, John C. Manly, has made a very fine living indeed prosecuting priests in Civil court.  He currently resides in cushy Newport Beach, CA.  If he's not motivated for money why didn't he take this case or any others Pro Bono?  He certainly seem to have enough money.  

- Father Kelly passed multiple lie detector tests.

- Father Kelly, the defendant in THIS case never abused my brother or myself or our friend(s) Joe Sadek or his 5 siblings (see comment:  http://www.lodinews.com/news/a....  Believe me, he had his share of opportunities.  

- Father Kelly a caring individual that loved his community, his Church and his calling.  He has now been defrocked and his life and saving have been ruined based on some pretty crappy evidence.

Questions for those of you like Bruce convicting Father Kelly via arm chair - I ask you this:

Can you even accept the *possibility* that Father Kelly, the defendant in THIS particular case, was wrongly convicted in a Civil court of law, or are you so blinded by your own circumstances or your biases that this cannot be an option?  

gustavoarellano
gustavoarellano

Haters of Manly are always HILARIOUS. Manly has done more to bring pedo-priests to justice than the Catholic Church has done in the entirety of its existence.

Bruce Reynard
Bruce Reynard

Putting the Kelly case aside for a moment: the statute of limitations on child molestation are very short in California. There is a dichotomy between the courts not wanting to have to hear cases based on little physical evidence and the very real fact that most people who were sexually abused as children do not make concerted effort to report until about a decade after limitations on criminal charges have expired.

There are various reasons for this delay in reporting. Often, the victim suffers silently through early adulthood, and then once they start facing the increased threat situations, like having children, having children who are approaching the age that they were when the abuse occurred, etc... then they realize that they can't suffer silently without a break. Anger, drinking, drugging, fighting, depression, and suicide attempts are often the pre-cursor to wanting to report.

Further complications include mistrust of authorities, because often they DID report as children but were either not understood or believed. We carry this mistrust into adulthood, and it even grows over time.

In short: Most victims of child molestation are not given the time to process and then report by the time the limitations are up. The only recourse is civil. And frankly award amount is often not enough to cover medical bills related to therapy and stress-caused illnesses that are well documented to be common in these situations.

If Manly makes a killing being an expert in getting these cases won, more power to him. Someone has get these guys shut down, even if only by exposure.

On "Repressed Memory" since you all get so wrapped up in it:  While it may be a "controversial" topic, it is one of the very real factors related to Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, and the two most extreme PTSD types of cases discussed are combat and childhood sexual molestation.

You can knock it all you want, but it's a reality.  J Alexander Bodikin and Elizabeth Loftus who talk about "False Memory" all the time (Bodikin for the Kelly case) are part of the most outspoken group "False Memory Syndrome Foundation" against "Repressed Memory"  But the examples and studies they always testify about are, in most cases NOT related to the real situations that the victims in these kinds of cases faced.

In fact this organization and the doctors are not to be trusted:

False Memory Syndrome Foundation (FMFS)  was formed by Pamela and Peter Freyd after their daughter (as an adult) PRIVATELY accused her father of molesting her when she was a child. Pamela and Peter then formed this foundation to help discredit their daughter and other adult victims of child sexual abuse like her. These people gathered either gullible or culpable shrinks around them to lend credence to their bunk theories about "false memories" in a really horrid act of betrayal against their daughter. (Who incidentally has her Ph.D in Psychology from STANFORD, and is a professor of Psychology.) 

Dr. Bodikin has said statements like THIS about other cases:

"In fact, Bodkin testified that Doe’s experiences with Ferguson — which included being given pornographic materials and alcoholic beverages when he was 13, 14 and 15 years old — was a “positive relationship.”

“He was eager to keep up the relationship,” Bodkin said. “This was his choice. He was eager to see Ferguson. From his perspective, this was something he was looking forward to.”

Dr. Bodikin's twisted, obviously biased perspective is NOT something that I'd rely on when trying to figure out if "repressed memories" and the creation of alleged "False Memories" are valid or not...

janesoutham
janesoutham

Tell "Michael Word" the alleged attorney that he needs to start using his real name. So such lawyer in the United States with that name.

Bruce Reynard
Bruce Reynard

Your "Follow up" to #5 doesn't have anything to do with the question. Both you and your brother seem loathe to answer it.

I'm glad that you were not a victim of Kelly.

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