Thursday, October 21, 2010

Accused priest can return to post

http://www.wbur.org/2010/09/30/weymouth-priest

Boston Archdiocese: Accused Weymouth Priest Can Return To His Post
By Jesse Logan Sep 30, 2010, 1:58 PM Updated 10/1COMMENTS (1)E-mail
BOSTON — The Boston Archdiocese has cleared a Weymouth priest accused of sexually abusing a minor in the 1970s.

After a review, the Archdiocese ruled that the allegations against Rev. Charles J. Murphy, formerly priest at St. Francis Xavier Parish, were unsubstantiated.

On Wednesday, Church officials told Murphy that he would be allowed to return to his post, after stepping down during an investigation by the Archdiocesan Review Board–an advisory committee comprised of clergy sex abuse victims, parents, and a judge.

However, the attorney for the victim, Mitchell Garabedian, says his client is not satisfied with the ruling.

“He’s extremely disappointed, disheartened and feels re-victimized by the review board’s actions,” Garabedian says.

The man, whose name has not been released, alleged that when he was 14 years old he was abused four times by Rev. Murphy: twice at St. Agatha’s Parish in Milton, once at Nantasket Beach in Hull, and once during a ski trip in New Hampshire.

Garabedian says his client was interviewed by archdiocesan investigators, but was not invited to testify before the board.

“If they’re finding facts out with regard to the case, one would think that they would at least have my client testify so they could hear his testimony, ask him questions, and make a determination that would be more fair,” he says.

Garabedian, who says he has represented over 750 victims of clergy sex abuse, says his client is now “seriously considering” filing a civil suit in court.

“The next step in this case, based on my experience, is for the client to determine whether he wants to proceed in the civil court, file a civil complaint against Father Murphy and any supervisors in the Archdiocese.”

The Archdiocese could not be reached for comment. In a statement released Wednesday, the Archdiocese says it is committed to supporting all people affected by clergy sexual abuse.

But Garabedian says his client may be looking to move forward on civil charges in order to obtain some level of closure.

“He’s now determining what steps to take in order to try to heal,” he says.

WBUR Topics • Boston • Religion

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