(Albany, New York) – On Tuesday in Albany, two sexual abuse survivors and their law firms, will:
• Release a report containing the identities, histories, photographs and information on 83 clerics accused of child sexual abuse in the Diocese of Albany;
• A sexual abuse survivor will speak publicly about his abuse by a priest at St. Anthony of Padua in Troy, NY;
• A second sexual abuse survivor will speak publicly about her abuse by a religious cleric Bishop Gibbons High School in Schenectady, NY;
• Demand full disclosure by the Diocese of Albany and the religious orders, regarding all clergy accused of sexual abuse who worked in the diocese, including their current whereabouts, photographs and histories.
Sexual abuse survivors speak, May 21st about child sex abuse in the Diocese of Albany.
Press Release Video and More.
Jeff: All right. Come on in close. I am Jeff Anderson and I am here today with my colleague and co-counsel, Cynthia LaFave, who is…she and her law firm or working with us and doing what we can to both help survivors and protect kids. I’m also here with Trusha Goffe from our firm…is to my far left. But we also stand with three very courageous survivors who will speak.
And to my far right is Jeanne Marron and she will introduce herself and why she stands with us today. To my immediate right is Bridie Farrell, another survivor who’s a co-founder of New York Loves Kids and an advocate as well. And then over to Cynthia’s left is Mark Lyman, a courageous survivor who stood up years ago for his truth and stands with us today. And we’re here today because we released what is called the Anderson Report. But the name of it isn’t important as much as what’s in it.
And what’s in it is the identities of 83 publicly accused clerics who worked in the Diocese of Albany, 83. And also in it is the assignment history of each of them. And why are the contents of this report that was posted and released today so important? It’s because the truth of the risk that has existed in the Diocese of Albany, both present and past, has not been fully revealed by the Catholic Bishops. Present and past, they have not.
And what we have done, in collaboration with these courageous survivors, and Cynthia and her firm, is assemble what public data is available on Bishop Accountability and other public sources to identify, not only who has been publicly accused in the Diocese of Albany of having committed rape and child sexual abuse while working in the diocese. We’ve also identified their assignment history to let people know, not only who, but where they’ve been.
We also have included names of offenders accused publicly that have never before been identified publicly. And we do know that the Catholic Bishop in Albany has already released a list of some 47, under some pressure. The number of those we’ve released here today is 83. A large number of the names yet to be known are priests in the Diocese of Albany accused but there’s also a number of priests who are members of religious orders that have never before been disclosed, never before been revealed, who worked and offended in the Diocese of Albany.
So this report…and that is an important part of making a more complete disclosure. The good news is survivors have come forward to help us assemble this data that is publicly available. The bad news is, and the scary news is, there’s so many more offenders out there yet to be revealed. So the work today is just the beginning. And this report, now posted, is just the start of compelling this Catholic diocese and the religious orders…the Catholic bishops in New York and the religious orders to come clean with the whole truth, the real hazard as it exists, because only then when that can be revealed and is…our children better protected in the future and our survivors given a chance to have their stories known and believed and children protected.
So, to each of the survivors, we’re deeply grateful. I’d like to turn first to Mark Lyman. Step up Mark and introduce yourself and tell us then what brings you with us here today, sir.
Mark: My name is Mark Lyman. I am from the Albany Roman Catholic Diocese. I’ve lived in this area my entire life. My reason for being here is to protect children and to make sure that what happened to me as a child doesn’t happen to another child here in New York State. My abuser was Father Frank Genevieve.
Jeff: And we have him pictured right over here. Mark, put your finger on his picture. Father Frank Genevieve.
Mark: The abuse was extensive, over many years. It had a horrible impact on my life. And as a survivor, I want to empower other survivors to step forward so that we can make this state stronger than ever and we can make sure that we protect children and that this type of abuse never ever happens again. It’s an important day. Thank you Jeff, and thank you for coming.
Jeff: And Mark, you came forward and we worked with you and our firm did, was that in the 1990s?
Mark: That’s correct, 1998.
Jeff: It was. Yeah. And you shared that, as a result of your courage and the courage of some other survivors, Genevieve was convicted?
Jeff: Of rape of children? And Mark, and the reality is that that name was never revealed much even though he was actually convicted. And so today, he’s on this list and he is a Franciscan, Order of Franciscans Minor. He’s a member of a religious order and that was not of…the Franciscans have not come clean with their list of known offenders, Genevieve included.
So we’re standing here today with this courageous survivor to exhort them to come clean, along with the Catholic bishops, to tell the whole truth that they know and have kept secret. Because what we have here today is only half the story. Thank you, Mark, for your courage…
Mark: Thank you, Jeff.
Jeff: …and standing with us today.
Mark: Thank you.
Jeff: Bridie Farrell, please come forward and tell us who you are and what you founded and what brings you with us today.
Bridie: Sure. Hi, my name is Bridie Farrell. I am also like two others up here, a survivor of childhood sexual abuse. Most of the capital region knows my story. I grew up in Saratoga Springs. At 15, I was molested by my then 33-year-old teammate. The irony is that most of the capital region knows my story, however, people in our community don’t know the names of abusers and predators that are among us.
And so, the point of us coming forward today, the point of us calling out these names, the point of us asking for accountability is so that, yes, people like myself and these others can heal and move forward, but it’s to change the culture so that the systems that are youth-serving are going to be safer for children.
When I… A number of years ago, I opened the phone book and I called many attorneys in Albany, all of who weren’t ready to help me, who found the topic to be too controversial. And so, I was left on my own. That is different. And so, I want to encourage people, throughout the capital region, Saratoga, any of these places, to gather the courage to speak up and to consider reaching out and sharing your story.
There’s folks up here you can call. My organization is New York Loves Kids and we are here to help people and empower survivors to share their story so that, yes, they can heal and then also it can be safer for children going forward. The Me Too Movement was a huge, huge movement across this country, however, it was a pink[SP] hashtag. And what we are up here saying is #KidsToo.
One in four girls and one in six boys are survivors of childhood sexual abuse by the time they’re 18. And until this state rises up and has a Kids Too Movement and we call out all of these abusers, all of these predators, our kids are not gonna be safe as they should be. So thank you all.
Jeff: Thank you, Bridie. Cynthia LaFave, come on up here and join the podium with me. I’d just like to express to you, Cynthia, and your firm, gratitude to work with us here in this area, to not only help the survivors but do what we can to release this information, to protect kids in the future. The bad news is that we have to do this and the survivors have to do this.
The good news is that we’re doing it and we’re assembling this information, and survivors are coming forward. And the even better news that is, in New York, where I’ve been trying to help survivors for over 30 years, there’s now the Child Victims Act. The good news is the Child Victims Act goes into effect August 14th. Is that right, Judy?
Jeff: August 16th. And it goes into effect on August 16th. And it gives survivors the opportunity to have his or her voice known and heard, and the courthouse doors open so he or she can take an action, whether they choose to be private as a Jane or John Doe, They can identify their offender, whether it was a coach or a cleric or an institution that chose to protect that offender and bring an action that they’ve never been able to before in New York. The Child Victims Act.
And so, some may say, “Mr. Anderson, wait a minute, why don’t you until it becomes law before you bring an action on behalf of one of these survivors or all these survivors you represent?” We can’t wait. We’ve been working to assemble this data. We have to do everything we can today to release this report, to have that truth known so kids can be protected, because the current practices adhere to secrecy.
Those employed by the Roman Catholic Bishops in New York and in the Diocese of Albany and the religious superiors, and they’re still adhering to secrecy, and as long as they do, kids are at peril. And so, we stand with these survivors to do what we can today to reveal that. And so, Cynthia LaFave, please step forward and share your thoughts with us. Mark, come on in close.
Cynthia: First, I would like to thank Jeff Anderson and Associates. The affiliation we have with his firm is allowing us to do this so meaningful work and we’re so honored to be able to help the survivors in this community. We are working on this so that we can give survivors the chance to expose offenders, past and present, in our community. And we are going to allow the survivors the chance to exercise their power in order to do something to protect other children in the future. And that is so important.
It is time for children to be protected. It is time for it all to be exposed and for survivors to get help, to bring hope, and to start healing. But in order to heal, you have to have the start of accountability and transparency. That has to be the beginning of it all and that’s why we’re here today. We stand with the survivors, and the safety of our children in our community must always come first. Thank you.
Jeff: Thank you, Cynthia LaFave, and to you and your firm for the work that you’ve done for those that have been hurt, and the work that we know has to be done to protect kids and help the survivors in their recovery of power. Because this is about not sex, but it’s about recovery of power, is it not, Jeanne Marron? So Jeanne Marron, step forward, will you please? And first, introduce yourself. And then after you do, I’d just like to say a word by way of background.
Jeanne: Okay. Hi, I’m Jeanne Marron. I grew up in Colonie in the village. It’s a part where Route Five becomes Central Avenue rather than Steve Street. And so I grew up there and I went to high school in Schenectady, a place called Notre Dame-Bishop Gibbons, which was run by two religious orders at the time. Those schools had been separate religious order schools prior to that, one being Notre Dame, one being Bishop Gibbons.
And I’m here today because I want to expose some of the prolific abuse that occurred there, and reach out to those who may still be in the shadows that were affected by some of the abusers there. I’m also here because I am tired of the diocese only releasing the diocese priest’s name and not focusing on the religious order, priest, nuns, and brothers, that were prolific abusers at times.
So my abuser is up here and his name was Hanney, James Vincent Hanney, Vince Hanney. He went by many different names. He sexually assaulted, raped, and exploited me through pornographic images for five years. And it was heinous abuse. The problem was I wasn’t the only one. I didn’t learn that until 2012 and I was horrified to realize that he was not specific for gender, he assaulted both females and males.
There are a number of people that have come forward so far, but I am sure there are many more in this area that have been affected by him. And I encourage you, if you’re still in the shadows, to come forward. And you can do it anonymously if you need to. But know that whether you do it or not, there’s people here that are going to seek justice in your name anyway against Haney and the systems that protected him and moved him around and wouldn’t give us accountability.
There’s another man up here that was also at our high school, Brother Clement Murphy. He was there for a very, very long time and he didn’t abuse the high schoolers. What he would do, he would go across the street to the grammar school, Saint Paul’s and pull out young girls, first-grade girls and take them and molest them. So, there were at least two prolific abusers at that school.
If you were affected by these men or by anybody at that school, at the schools they were before or anywhere in this region, I encourage you to come forward, find out what your rights are and exercise them if you choose to. I’ll be there to stand by you, and I think most survivors up here would.
Jeff: And, Jeanne Marron, first, thank you for the voice that you share with us today. This is not the first time you’ve spoken up and out. And you along with these other survivors have been advocating and agitating for some time.
Jeanne: A little bit.
Jeff: And I think it also needs to be emphasized that Brother James Vincent Hanney is an Irish Christian Brother, a member of a religious order. His name was never released by that religious order and has not been until today…and/or revealed by Jeanne earlier. It also needs to be revealed that we, at our firms, represent 10, 10 survivors of Hanney right now that have come forward to us privately and confidentially. And each of the names of those survivors will remain confidential even though Jeanne chose to use her name.
So if 10 have come forward so far, involving Hanney’s abuse of so many kids, boys, and girls, in the 70s, how many more are there? And then, how many more are there, of all these others, who we know are publicly accused and how many more are there of those that we don’t know that are out there, past or present? So thank you, Jeanne, for that because that’s really important.
And those people, in part, came forward because you found your voice and started to share it, and that inspired other survivors to come forward, and now have a chance for hope, help, healing and to be a part of child protection because of the Child Victims Act now in law, in New York. Right, Bridie?
Jeanne: Can I just mention, the reason I found my voice was, I started… Once I realized I was not the only survivor of this particular abuser, I started to report to both law enforcement and to the diocese and it was there that my voice wasn’t being heard. My concerns of finding him at other Catholic institutions that he was moved to, and known to be at supposedly at the time, wasn’t being heard. He wasn’t being stopped from having access to kids. That’s how I found my voice.
It was to protect other kids going forward. And so, that’s what made me a bit of an agitator, as Jeff mentioned, along with Bridie, in our work. So that’s a big piece of it that, you know, survivors have been… Many survivors because of the way the religious orders and the dioceses work, their voices have been thoroughly silenced by all these movements and being turned away when they try to report and get action and try to protect kids.
We’ve been out there doing a lot for a long time, but… It was back in 2013 that I tried to get kids protected from this guy and it’s still taking forever to do so. And he’s still alive. He’s still out there.
Jeff: And he may be in the Philippines as we speak. We don’t know where he is, correct?
Jeff: We track these guys, we’re looking to find him. We know that he was moved from Bishop Gibbons, where he violated, at least we know 10 kids, with whom we’re now working as adults. We know there are more. We know that he was moved from there to…from Notre Dame-Bishop Gibbons to All Hallows in The Bronx. And then we know that he was moved from All Hallows in The Bronx, that high school there, to another high school in New Jersey, Essex Catholic High School in New Jersey. Did you hear this?
Jeanne: He was actually there earlier.
Jeff: Well, whatever it was. He was transferred, at least we know, three different times, at three different locations, with a long history of violation of children, as a serial offender. And we don’t know where he is today. And so, Jeanne, you also mentioned that you brought forth information in 2013. You actually have wrote a letter to the Bishop, did you not?
Jeff: And you exhorted the Bishop, at that time, to do what? Tell us.
Jeanne: Well, I asked him to meet with me. And that was my first…well, I wanted them to accept my report. I heard that, you know, if you were abused by clergy, you’re supposed to submit a report. And there was this whole process and I wrote the…I did the report, I wrote a letter. And by the way, part of that process is that they’re going to tell the person you’re naming and share the report with them.
Which part of my letter objected to that because I was describing how scared I was of this man, who part of his threats was a gun, you know, that sharing that was kind of not the best way to start an investigation against a cleric and to get people to come forward to report. But anyway, so my goal was to meet with the Bishop, to hopefully get their procedures to be a little bit better, to get this man away from any children, hopefully, but at least Catholic children, anywhere that the Catholic system would have power to remove him from.
Which, I was under the understanding he was in a Catholic school at that time called Infant Jesus Academy in the Philippines, and, you know, to see what else could be done. And also to find out why my data and my report would not be accepted by the diocese. I finally did get a meeting with Bishop Hubbard and he basically said there was nothing he could do.
And then I pushed and I did get him eventually to reach out to the Infant Jesus Academy. But he also did tell me that he was not gonna accept my report or pass it on, that that wasn’t the way that it went, and that it had to go through the superior orders of… And you know, this is a big issue. All these grand juries going and looking at the diocese and not looking at the religious orders simultaneously. They’re missing huge portions of the data in every diocese when they do that.
Jeff: So 24 of those publicly accused clerics in this report are members of religious orders, Franciscans, or Irish Christian brothers or others. And there’s additional 12 names identified in the Anderson Report released today, that are priests that worked and had been publicly accused of childhood sexual abuse in the Diocese of Albany, ordained by the diocese, the Catholic Bishops in Albany.
And that’s why this report is not the full story. This is what we could assemble and what is publicly available, and what is already known to us that we can make public today. And what we have to do is exhort and challenge the religious orders and the Catholic bishops to come clean, completely clean. And the release of 36 or 47 names by the Catholic Diocese in Albany, they hail as transparency. It’s not. It’s the half-truth. And until the whole truth is known, kids are at risk and survivors are suffering.
So, thank you to the courageous survivors for helping us, joined together with Cynthia and her firm, to have some truth known, as partial as it may be. This is the beginning. More to come, work to be done. There is hope, help, and healing. The courthouse doors are opening, and the truth needs to be revealed. Until it is, every day, we’re gonna stand with these courageous survivors in support of that. And thank you to Mark, to Jeanne, and to Bridie for standing with us here today. With that in mind, are there any questions?
Man: Jeff, are you alleging that the Catholic Diocese of Albany is a criminal enterprise?
Jeff: The question is, are we alleging the Catholic Diocese of Albany is a criminal enterprise? No. The Catholic diocese and the Catholic bishops across this country whom we’ve sued, every single one of them, in the last 30 years, that they have permitted crimes of clerics to have occurred and given safe harbor to it, to them. We also know that they’ve engaged in practices, employing protocols of secrecy, that have allowed the top officials to be complicit in participation of some of those crimes.
We are not calling the Catholic Diocese of Albany a criminal enterprise, we are calling on them to do better to protect the kids and reveal the truth today.
Woman: [inaudible 00:26:53] but there’s still people who question, you know, a lot of these guys might passed away at this point. So people might ask, you know, “Why is it important to still talk about this? I think that’s something people here understand but it might be a question that our viewers are asking. Why is it still important to talk about anyone here who’s accused, even if they may have already passed on?
Jeff: Yeah. Well, you know, Mark, do you want to address that because Genevieve died, I think, was it 2009 or something like that?
Mark: Yes. Actually, he passed away in 2014.
Mark: Let me give you an example.
Jeff: So the question is this, first, why is it important to have Genevieve and the other offenders names out there now because those offenders, these accused offenders, may be dead? Why is it important to you, Mark, and why is that important to the community?
Mark: I think many survivors realize at some point that they’re not the only one. And I think there are number of adults out there who were sexually abused as children who haven’t been empowered to come forward. And we want to let them know that we stand with them and we speak for them. And just because the perpetrator may be deceased doesn’t mean that the crime didn’t occur, that that individual and their families and their community was not negatively impacted.
That’s happened to so many survivors here in the Capitol region and throughout the Albany Roman Catholic Diocese. So it’s very important because our mission is to speak up, speak out, and make sure that this doesn’t ever happen again.
Woman: [inaudible 00:28:44] it’s not just about, you know…part of it is, but it’s not just about holding these people accountable as far as the [inaudible 00:28:51], but also about healing of the victims, right?
Mark: It brings a tremendous amount of healing. People wanna move on with their lives. Their lives have been negatively impacted for years. Not just their lives, but their family’s lives. So it’s important and it makes a big difference for all of us survivors.
Jeff: And Mark, what you’re saying is that, to the survivors, you can come forward, your name can remain private…
Mark: That’s correct.
Jeff: …and you can be believed. And many of these names have survivors realize you’re not alone and you’re at the only one, and there is hope and you can get help and now something can be done legally.
Mark: You will be heard and someone will be there to listen to what you have to say.
Woman: [inaudible 00:29:48] for this report [inaudible 00:29:51] talking about some of the others, their whereabouts are unknown like you were saying. What is…how big of a concern is it that they may still be out there and doing the same thing?
Jeff: Well, the question is how big a concern is it that some of these people have passed on, but even more importantly are still out there and we don’t know where they are. And that is one of the biggest concerns. These publicly accused child molesters that have worked in this diocese, who are at large, and we don’t know where they are. And until communities know who they are, those communities can’t be alerted to the risk.
And it is the Catholic bishops that have chosen to keep this information secret, and the heads of the religious orders that have chosen not to reveal it. And it is these survivors and our firms that are choosing to report it so that the communities can know that there are risks and they are past and they are present and they are real.
Woman: This could be a question for any of the survivors, [inaudible 00:31:05]. How was the abuse by your abusers, how did that affect your faith? Because I think that is also a big part of this for a lot of survivors as well. [inaudible 00:31:21]
Jeff: Well, you know, the question is, is how did it affect your faith? And one of the things we’re doing today is revealing the risk and the hazards that we have been able to assemble. And instead of talking about the individual experiences that are real…and it’s a fair question, but for today, we’re gonna get this information out that…and we’re gonna focus on that one. Anything else you wanna add? Bridie.
Woman: No, I understand that but I still would like to hear [inaudible 00:31:50].
Jeff: Yeah, sure.
Bridie: Sure, I’ll address your question, and that’s how does this information affect our faith? My abuse was within the sports community, so I’ll address it to that. I would put my kids in speed skating. I love…I mean, yes, it’s just going around in a circle, I’ll admit but I love speed skating. I love sport. I believe in sport. I believe in the community. It brings together…
If everyone could clear the rest of their week, I will give you all the stories of the amazing people that helped me in speed skating. The amazing experiences I’ve had. All the time that I was with men that allowed me to trust men, to grow, to be able to stand up and to be who I am today. So this is not anti-Catholic, this is anti-crime.
This is not against these individual people and calling this a criminal ring, this is to hold an institution accountable that facilitated child sexual abuse. So does it skew our faith or where we came from? It shakes it. But it caused me to look at speed skating and be like, “This is the best damn place I would put my kids.”
And so yeah, there is this one bad part of it, and let’s address that and let’s fix that from the top down, not by just one-offs but fixing the institution and how that’s done. And I think that collectively, we will still value the communities that come from any of this, whether it is religion or whether it is sports or whether it is the boy scouts.
Jeff: I think that I’m gonna conclude with this comment. Because we have a number of religious clerics identified behind us and we’re exhorting the Catholic bishops, the religious orders, to do better and take action and we’re gonna force them to, through legal action. But it’s never about faith. The community of faith are the people, are the Catholics in the parishes and the believers.
This is all about the failure of the institution, and the men that are at the top, that make conscious choices to protect the reputation of the institution. It’s about that and it’s not about the community of faith and the believers, some of whom have lost their faith because of the violations, others retain it.
Bottom line is, there’s an institutional failure in this geographical area and in the state of New York, and across this country, by the religious superiors and the Catholic bishops and we’re staying with the survivors to address that. Thank you all and to each of you survivors. Can I give you a hug? Thank you.
Cynthia: Thank you so much.
Jeff: Thank you. Jeanne, can I give you a hug? Thank you so much.
Man: Jeff, I’m gonna [inaudible 00:34:27] the time you called for full accountability on the part of the diocese. I wonder if you think it’s relevant that people think maybe you wouldn’t be filing this lawsuit if there wasn’t so much money at stake?
Jeff: Well, look, we’re doing what we can. We haven’t filed a suit here. We’re issuing a report that we have prepared, armed with the public information that we know is out there, that we know the Catholic bishops have held secret in large part, and we haven’t filed suit. So this isn’t about, as you ask, money, this is about the truth and the hazard that needs to be revealed today, armed with the courage of the survivors and the hope that can be brought with the Child Victims Act. Right?
Bridie: A hundred percent. It’s not about that. It is not about the money.
Jeff: So this is about the truth and getting it out there and protecting those kids. Thank you all.
Jeff: Thank you.
Jeff: You were great. Mark.
Mark: Thank you, brother. I appreciate you.