Press Conference April 12, 2012 - Transcripts
ROBERT PERRON: The Archdiocese told me, in my case, that they didn’t want his name released, Rickard O’Donovan, by no means, because he is deceased, and they were afraid that it would upset his family. I would like you to take a good look at this picture over here. That’s me, at 9 years old, as a child. As a child, that was molested. Don’t you think I’m upset over this? I was the one that was molested. Do I care about his family? Not really. Do I care about him? No. I wish he was alive today so that I could see him, face to face. Unfortunately I can’t. Thank you very much.
AUDIENCE QUESTION: Robert, can I just ask you, how do you feel about the church basically not admitting with him? I mean, they did come to a settlement, but not an admission of guilt.
PERRON: It’s more than outrageous. It’s ludicrous. I mean, how can they not come forward? Look at all the victims. Is everybody lying? Come on. It’s just ridiculous. I don’t understand it. Nobody would understand it. I mean, I’m coming forward telling you about these parishes that he was in, because I want people to know if they were in this parish and they were molested, to come forward. They have a right to come forward. For themselves. Did I answer your question?
AUDIENCE QUESTION: Could you tell me, when you came forward and what made you decide to come forward?
PERRON: I came forward two years ago, and the reason I came forward later (in life) was because I, um, had dealt with a lot of demons in my life. A lot of things happened to me, as an adult, because of this, and I won’t go into it. I corrected those situations and became a better person. I was able to deal with myself on a level where I could come forward, and face this. And get closure. The only way you’re going to get closure and feel at peace with yourself, is to come forward. Talk about it. Don’t hold this in. The more you hold it in, the worse you’re going to be. It’s going to eat you alive. That’s why I’m pleading to you, to put this information out. It’s important that people know what rectories and churches he was in, in his later years, up to the year 2000. It’s very important to me. It’s very important to the victims. Because I know there are more victims out there. Thank you.
AUDIENCE QUESTION: How do you spell your last name?
PERRON: P E RR O N. Robert Perron.
AUDIENCE QUESTION: How old are you, sir?
PERRON: 57 years old. This happened 48 years ago.
AUDIENCE QUESTION: Could you say where you’re from?
PERRON: Originally, I’m from Brockton, Massachusetts. I lived actually 3 streets away from the rectory, on Henry Street.
AUDIENCE QUESTION: Did you ever consider telling a parent, or anyone, at that time?
PERRON: When you’re involved with a priest that’s a pedophile, he coerces you into telling you that you’re not loved by your parents. My mother was divorced. She just got remarried. She was trying to have children. I was a latchkey kid. I grew up very fast. I was pulled into this, and told.
AUDIENCE: Your mother was a Catholic?
PERRON: My mother wasn’t Catholic. She married a Catholic. She was Protestant. OK, so I had really no religion before she remarried. I was pulled into this by him, coerced by him, and he told me that he loved me, not to tell anybody, that I wasn’t loved at home, nobody loved me. I was a very lonely child. I was pushed aside. Not intentionally, it just happened that way. Under the circumstances, I don’t blame anybody for that. Of course not. But, the circumstances were right. The priest was there. He knew it, and he took advantage of it. I mean, the audacity of a priest coming into the store where your mother worked, and trying to, basically, take your kid away, to molest him. That was his plan? He had the intention, he had the ability, and he had the opportunity. And he did it. How many other ones out there that he did it to, I don’t know. Any other questions?
AUDIENCE: It was such a different time, to, I mean, telling somebody that a priest molested you, people didn’t believe you back then, right?
PERRON: Well, my mother, she just remarried, to a French-Canadian, his mother was from Canada. A very religious woman. Deilia Perron, bless her soul. She took me in as her grandchild, never asked any questions. Lovely woman. Never asked any questions. I was adopted by my father. I have his name, my stepfather’s name. I’m adopted.
GARABEDIAN: You know, you say it’s a different time, but it wasn’t a different time for priests and the supervisors of priests back then.
AUDIENCE: No, but I mean, the ability for a victim, I think, to come forward and say…
GARABEDIAN: Oh, it’s difficult every day, at any time, for any victim. It’s very difficult because it’s a deep, dark, ugly secret where the victim feels unnecessary guilt, shame and embarrassment. It’s up to the adult. It’s up to the supervisor of the adult, to do something to prevent this from happening. It’s all about prevention. It wasn’t a different time in the 1960s and the 1970s. Sexual abuse was not, it was frowned upon back then, and it should have been. But where were the priests? Where were these people who claimed to have been holier-than-thou? Where were their supervisors? Where was Cardinal Law? The evidence in the Geoghan cases shows that Cardinal Law knew that Father John J. Geoghan was a sexual abuser, yet he transferred him to another parish, without warning parishioners. Why didn’t he err on the side of caution? He knew that Father John J. Geoghan was a sexual pedophile, yet he transferred him to St. Julia's in Weston. He knew it, and that’s the evidence that I have in my offices, and it is in writing, and I believe that it’s on BishopAccountability.org, too.
My list now totals 129 priests, religious order priests, Archdiocesan priests, members of religious organizations that have credibly been found to have sexually molested children. I’m one person, one lawyer. 129 pedophiles associated with the Catholic Church. More than 1000 victims are represented by me, have been represented by me.
Anne, do you have anything else to say?
DOYLE: No, I think that about covers it. I will say, interestingly enough, yesterday the United States Congress on Catholic Bishops came out with an updated report on how many priests have been accused in the last year. The net newly identified is about 160 or so, in 2011. It is remarkable that that many priests. There are now over 6000 accused priests acknowledged by the Catholic Church. They claim that they have heard reports, plausible or credible, against more than 6000 accused priests. So it’s sad, but it’s not surprising, that an attorney is still getting fresh reports.
GARABEDIAN: People are pouring in. It’s not like I get a call every couple of weeks. Constant. Constantly. And I want them to call me. I want them to try to heal. But it’s simply amazing. Simply amazing. Thank you for coming, too.
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In The Media
May 10, 2016
January 13, 2016"Deerfield Academy settles case alleging 1980s abuse for $500,000," MassLive.com, January 12, 2016
November 03, 2015“Stanley Tucci (Mitchell Garabedian) tells Mark Ruffalo (Michael Rezendes) how the Catholic Church owns Boston in exclusive Spotlight clip,” Entertainment Weekly, October 27, 2015
October 03, 2015"Ex-Priest Jailed in Abuse Scandal Has Been Set Free," (Father Paquin) Boston Globe, October 2, 2015
June 20, 2015"Survivors Skeptical of Vatican Tribunal," Boston Herald, June 11, 2015
June 20, 2015"Letter could Open Door To More Church Sex Abuse Lawsuits,"(Father Vallely) Associated Press via ABC News, April 7, 2015
June 20, 2015"Lawsuits Allege Sexual Abuse Decades Ago by Harwich Priest," (Father Nickel) Cape Cod Times, January 22, 2015
June 20, 2015"Attorneys: Settlements reached with 88 former Bishop McCort students in Baker abuse case" The Tribune-Democrat, October 21, 2014
June 20, 2015"$500k to Each Boy in Haiti Sex Case," ctpost.com, July 1, 2013
June 20, 2015"Sandusky headed to prison, but scandal persists" AP, Boston Globe, October 10, 2012
History of Obtaining Results for Victims and Survivors
In 2002, Mitchell Garabedian obtained a $10,000,000 settlement for 86 Father Geoghan victims or survivors. In 2003, Mitchell Garabedian representing 120 victims and survivors of over 40 different priests, along with lawyers representing other victims and survivors of abuse, obtained an $85,000,000 settlement with the Archdiocese of Boston. In 2013, Mitchell Garabedian as lead counsel obtained a $12,000,000 settlement for 24 Haitian victims of Douglas Perlitz. The Law Offices of Mitchell Garabedian continue to work to obtain substantial settlements for victims and survivors.
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The Story of Mitchell Garabedian's Fight for Compensation for Victims and Survivors of Sexual Abuse
Mitchell Garabedian is an attorney specializing in sexual abuse cases. He has become an internationally recognized advocate on the topic. Attorney Garabedian became widely known for his representation of victims or survivors of Roman Catholic Church clergy sexual abuse in the 1990's and 2000's.
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