The Twin Cities Archdiocese Charged With Failing to Protect Children
On June 5, 2015, criminal charges were filed against the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis, accusing church leaders of failing to protect children from sexual abuse and for mishandling repeated complaints of sexual misconduct against a priest named Curtis Wehmeyer. As reported in The New York Times, prosecutor John J. Choi, stated that the charges stem from “a disturbing institutional and systemic pattern of the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis over the course of decades.”
The criminal charges are another step towards holding the Archdiocese accountable for their failure to protect children. The charges follow recent reforms by Minnesota lawmakers to provide justice for sexual abuse victims, past and present. In 2013, the Minnesota State Legislature passed the Child Victims Act, which opened a three-year window for victims of sexual abuse to file lawsuits that would otherwise be barred by the statute of limitations.