Defrocked Cardinal to appear in Massachusetts court on sexual assault charges
Former Roman Catholic Cardinal Theodore McCarrick is scheduled to appear in a Massachusetts court on Thursday (August 26) after being charged in late July for molesting a 16-year old boy during a wedding reception at Wellesley College in Massachusetts in 1974.
Documents filed in state court in Dedham, Massachusetts, show McCarrick, 91, faces three counts of indecent assault and battery on a person 14 years or older.
The alleged victim told investigators that McCarrick, a family friend, began molesting him when he was a boy, according to a police report filed in court. The abuse took place in several states, including New York, California and New Jersey, the report said.
McCarrick, who currently lives in Dittmer, Missouri, is scheduled to be arraigned in Massachusetts on September 3, according to a spokesperson for the Norfolk County district attorney's office.
The man alleged to authorities that McCarrick had groped him as they walked around campus before taking him into a small closet-like room and fondling him while saying prayers.
McCarrick was expelled from the priesthood in 2019 after a Vatican investigation found him guilty of molesting both minors and adults.
A lengthy Vatican report released in November 2020 found that McCarrick had risen through the church's ranks despite persistent rumors of sexual misconduct, including a 2000 promotion from Pope John Paul II.
McCarrick's attorney, Barry Coburn, told Reuters: "We look forward to addressing the case in the courtroom."
The victim's lawyer, Mitchell Garabedian, said the case is the first time that a U.S. cardinal has been criminally charged with a sexual crime against a minor.
"It takes an enormous amount of courage for a sexual abuse victim to report having been sexually abused to investigators and proceed through the criminal process," he said in an email.