By Bobby Ross Jr.
(RNS) — A highly publicized Pennsylvania grand jury report last year identified more than 300 predator Catholic priests who had sexually abused more than 1,000 children going back decades.
But because the crimes were hidden by the church hierarchy, “almost every instance of abuse we found is too old to be prosecuted,” the statewide investigating body reported.
Now, the same statute of limitations that prevented prosecutions in those cases has prompted a state judge to vacate the convictions of a former longtime Protestant youth minister.
Judge Steve Leskinen of the Fayette County Court of Common Pleas in Uniontown, Pa., recently overturned Clyde E. Brothers Jr.’s convictions on corruption of minors and indecent exposure charges.
“I’m sick to my stomach,” one alleged victim’s mother said upon learning that Brothers, 68, won’t be going to prison. Her name is being withheld to protect the identity of her son.
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