**********The City of Angels is Everywhere*********

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Salesian Cases head for trial in LA November 5th and Church reveals Salesians’ concern for underprivileged boys in 2007

By Kay Ebeling

From Catholic Encyclopedia: “In the first half of the nineteenth century Italy had not recovered from the French Revolution. Education, morality, and religion were then at their lowest ebb. To save the rising generation the Salesian Society was founded. In 1844 Don Bosco began to gather together poor and neglected boys. In 1845 the first night-school was opened at Valdocco. . .” and the Salesian tradition of bringing young boys up from poverty began.

A church attorney demonstrated that concern for poor young boys by Salesians in the 21st century this morning in court: “If these 10 year old now 60 year old juvenile delinquents are to be believed, he says he saw Miani abusing a child. Then he says he saw the Archbishop. This goes past the credibility issue to the crux of the problem. Most of those men are long dead.”

JUDGE: I’m curious as to why you rely on Mr. (Plaintiff) for that information?”

CHURCH ATTORNEY MCPHEELY: “I’m not relying on Mr. P for much.”

That last line delivered with all the contempt you’d expect from an old retired Irish cop in a t-shirt hollering at his TV set. I have to admit I like this church attorney for the Salesians McPheely (McFeely?) as he doesn't even try to act smooth and cool, like Hennigan’s minions. No custom tailoring here, strictly Hollywood Suit Outlet and “I’m going to be as much of an asshole as I want to be” attitude.

This case is set for trial November 5. Outside court Plaintiff Attorney Tony DeMarco said, “I don't think they're going to settle this one.”

Salesian perpetrator priest Titian Miani is still alive as are other eye witnesses. All it takes is one hierarchy witness to get on the stand and the whole stream of crimes could come pouring out. Will Miani take the stand? Here is what happened in court today. (Copy and pasted here are notes I took at the hearing this morning re the Salesians cases¬. Now I’ve got to get back to work.)

JUDGE FROMHOLZ: This is motion for summary judgment filed by the Salesians. Tentative is to grant re two plaintiffs and deny re all others. Do the attorneys have anything to add?

CHURCH ATTORNEY MCPHEELY: I have several items. . . .it’s about the facts of this case. The court has denied the motion but has not addressed what may or may not have happened in Italy 60 years ago.

JUDGE: We're now talking about the camping trip in 1947. The tentative says there’s not adequate evidence of notice.

MCPHEELY: Well not only what happened 60 years ago in Italy, I do want to spend the court’s time talking about what happened 50 years ago or didn't happen. It’s not enough to say if can put on evidence you're not denied due process. I believe you can be denied due process if over the passage of time you have lost evidence and you are unable to put on evidence.

McPHEELY: If these 10 year old now 60 year old juvenile delinquents are even to be believed. Mr P says he saw Miani abusing a child. He saw the Archbishop dressed up in his finest. This goes past the credibility issue and to the crux of the problem. Both of those men are long dead.

JUDGE: I’m curious as to why you rely on Mr. P for that information?”

McPHEELY: (CONTEMPTUOUSLY) I’m not relying on Mr. P for much. How can we ask Father DeM what did you do, what was the investigation and what was the archbishop doing here. Mr. P is telling one half of the story.

McPHEELY: If this case is allowed to go to trial, the plaintiffs will put on their story and the jury will have to make up the other half of the story 'cause we're not going to have it.

JUDGE: Mr. DeMarco?

DEMARCO: Father Miani is still alive as are numerous other employees. It’s not only one side of the story about Father Miani. Numerous other priests have not made any statement as to how many kids still exist. To figure out what the full story is -- we do have to put more forward than full speculation. They have to say there are no other witnesses. They have to do the research.

MCPHEELY: It’s not true we've failed to produce Father M. Counsel’s office dropped it three or four weeks ago. If they think he’s such an important witness they should have deposed him 3 or 4 weeks ago.

(Yes, we all know how cooperative the Salesians are when Plaintiffs try to conduct depositions. This has to be done in front of a jury.)

MCPHEELY: And another thing. The court has combined four plaintiffs who claim they were abused in the 1950s combined without notice to us.

McPHEELY: What happened is in his mediation statement Mr. H continued to add to the number of people who abused him. He added two guys in his mediation statement and interrogatories and in deposition named a fourth one yet unnamed.

We say as to anybody but Miani this case relative to Mr. H cannot go forward. There is nothing different from what happened here -- there was no amendment of the complaint to add [SOUNDS LIKE] diMaria or Lorezono as abusers and a fourth unnamed individuals.

JUDGE: They're not parties to the lawsuit.

MCPHEELY: That's not at all what I’m saying. Miani is not a defendant here and neither are the other alleged perpetrators. The issue is the complaint sought damages due to those three people.

He cannot put forth evidence of negligence on the part of B C and D. The only complainant on whom we can move forward in Miani.

JUDGE: Mr. DeMarco?

DEMARCO: We presented these facts to the defendants years ago. They've known the facts regarding the other priests for several years. They could have filed a demurrer. You can’t make it a cause of action now.

We have alleged negligence as to the Salesians and to St. Don Bosco High. Mr. H was a student there while several Salesians molested him. Our damages are for the several years of sexual abuse he endured there. This makes the case more egregious. It doesn't make it dismissible.

MCPHEELY: How on earth could we have demurred? The complaint only says abuse by Miani. Another issue I want to bring forward is maybe we haven’t made ourselves clear to the court. This has to do with the role of the high school. We've said there’s no evidence whatsoever of any negligence.

They say well yes there is, there’s this guy Clinton who testified and he testified a lot of stuff. But he testified he gave notice to Father [SOUNDS LIKE] Counsel well, your honor, we're talking about 340.1 unlawful sexual abuse.

The record is that he told Fr. Counsel about some quote funny stuff unquote. That is not a lawful sexual conduct and more to the point, Clinton admitted that he had no recollection whether he told a Father Counsel about the priest in other words named the name.

There is no evidence as to the high school as to notice, so summary judgment should be granted.

DEMARCO: Re Mr. F, he says he was present when the abuse took place. He’s an eye witness to the abuse. He said he told the brother and wasn’t believed.

There’s notice to the Salesian society. They run St. Don Bosco High. They're one and the same. You've got the same people running both institutions. How could they say the same people running both schools, somehow they're divided in half? I just don’t see it.

McFeely: We're talking about the high school, we're talking about Brother McG and mr. H. there was no Brother named Richard at that high school at this time, again something Mr. G told us about.

DeMarco: He said he believes the name was Richard. We're talking about memories and names. There was a statement and there are two specific exhibits we attached

The Father M deposition exhibit 18. Plus relevant sections of Catholic directories that clearly lay out that they operated the schools and that Father ? was director there.

MCPHEELY: Pay attention. If there were a Richard there and there wasn’t he was a low level novice training to be a priest. Notice to him is not notice to anybody. They're claiming “some person I can’t identify saw something.”

(This guy seems to respect novice priests about as much as he respects the poverty stricken boys who the Salesians supposedly serve.)

DEMARCO: Your Honor, that's certainly a point they can raise to the jury.

Maybe they will on November 5th? Stay tuned.

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