Msgr. Lynn’s Lawyers Will Seek Bail Pending Appeal


Click here to read: “Msgr. Lynn’s Lawyers Seek Bail On Appeal,” by John Slobodzian, The Philadelphia Inquirer, August 5, 2012

Excerpt: “In court filings, Lynn’s attorneys have argued that he should be released on bail pending appeal because there is “better than a 50-50 chance” that the state Superior Court will find the prosecution’s extension of the child endangerment statute improper in charging a church supervisor.”

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53 Responses to “Msgr. Lynn’s Lawyers Will Seek Bail Pending Appeal”

  1. if they let him out ,im done.ill sell my house,take whatever i can get and live in a cave somewhere.there will be not such thing as justice or any chance of the truth.

  2. The excerpt that Susan posted is exactly why I keep harping on the laws..I may sound like a broken record but it all comes down to the law. There is no doubt the appeal will be based on this and I agree that there is a chance it could be successful. It doesn’t matter what we want,how we want it…the law must support it. I also imagine that local as well as national law enforcement might watch this appeal before moving forward.

    • I am trusting that Lynn will not get a Bail ‘reprieve’.

      • The jury did not lightly convict Lynn. It was an arduous 13 week process where both sides had an ample opportunity to present their case.

        I hope a lawyer will comment, and soon on this bail issue, but as a total non lawyer I note a discussion on Jury nullification,:

        Here in America, the Founding Fathers understood the importance of allowing juries to determine not just the guilt or innocence of the man on trial, but the justice and fairness of the law he’s charged with breaking. John Adams said of jury nullification, “It is not only [the juror’s] right, but his duty…to find the verdict according to his own best understanding, judgment, and conscience, though in direct opposition to the direction of the court.” John Jay, the first chief justice of the Supreme Court, said “The jury has the right to judge both the law as well as the fact in controversy.”

      • Joan, I am reposting a blog that attorney Max Kennerly wrote on the Priest Abuse Trial blog. It is not concerning bail but the issue of Lynn and the charge of child endangerment as well as Pa. law.
        My hunch also is no bail reprieve..we’ll see.. but this appeal should not be taken lightly . http://www.priestabusetrial.com/2012/03/monsignor-lynn-and-duty-to-prevent.html#more

      • Kathy….was it Jerry who suggested that an appeal would be years away?

      • I am not sure but most think that he will have served a large portion of his time sentenced by the time an appeal is completed. I believe this hearing tomorrow is the very last issue to go before Judge Sarmina concerning the Lynn case. If you look at the Sandusky trial and the Lynn trial, it is smaller rural county vs.large city with a high crime rate. Lynn and Sandusky verdicts announced the same day. With Sandusky,indictment to verdict was 7 months, with the Lynn trial it was 16 months.

      • Joan: I posted the question about “Jury nullification” awhile back, and then I had to be away for a couple of weeks and couldn’t follow the discussion. Do you remember where the initial discussion was, because I’d like to go back and read the responses. One of my friends fancies himself to be an authority on everything, including women and Constitutional Law, and he is the one who first told me about the concept of Jury Nullification. (Hopefully he knows more about that topic than he does about women.) I wonder if the Appeals Court takes “Jury Nullification” into consideration when reviewing a case, or if it just ignores it and “Goes by the Law!”

    • foundation to abolish child sex abuse and justice4pakids are lobbying to change laws please get involved………..pa laws are outdated.My husbands offender(not a priest) is not on Megan’s law and after a little time in jail was on house arrest and now walking around stores malls etc and coffee shops with life parole after destroying much of my husband life and our marriage……..laws are not fair nor just………because they are outdated

      • Thank you Beth, for using your non Catholic church example of the punishment not fitting the crime. It is not just cases involving priests..not at all. I believe in the case of your husband his offender is not on Megan’s List because the years the crimes took place preceeded Megan’s List ,even though he was convicted post Megan’s List?

      • Kathy you are correct.

    • Kathy….I don’t think you are ‘harping’ but rather pointing out the importance of legislation to protect kids.

      This is probably a thoroughly goofy idea, but I was wondering if you could put together a little educational piece for C4C folks that identifies the individual leg problem and a possible leg response?

      Mandatory clergy abuse reporting with tough sanctions.

      Strengthened ‘supervisor’ laws for those overseeing youth.

      Civil Statutes of Limitations window extensions.

      Strengthened laws on porn, human trafficking etc.

  3. The given is that it will hurt victims. For many pew Catholics that doesn’t seem to mean enough. However, the collateral damage is to the Catholics in the pews who will foot the bill for an appeal. If no bail is allowed, there is a slight chance the rcc will let Lynn hang for the rest of them…no money out and the only person inconvenienced would be Lynn. He gets bail and Catholics are going to be on the hook for another 11 mil. at least.

    What schools/churches are they going to close next to save Lynn the inconvenience of jail time?

    • SW, CBSjust reported that Lynn would no longer be represented by trial counsel in an appeal, but rather by two other attys.

      • CBS: PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The prosecution called a defense request for bail pending appeal for Monsignor William Lynn a waste of the court’s time.

        The judge has found Monsignor Lynn has no right to bail pending appeal, and she ruled accordingly.

        “Denied, the bail situation is denied. The judge said that she wouldn’t consider a bail application now pending appeal and she really didn’t want to hear any argument. I snuck some argument in, but she really didn’t want to hear any argument,” defense attorney Jeffrey Lindy said.

        And there’s more bad news for Lynn. Lindy says the Archdiocese, which has been paying Lynn’s defense, has drastically cut back funds. So Lindy and co-counsel, Alan Tauber, are out, but two other attorneys will continue on the case.

      • Kate FitzGerald (hadit) Reply August 6, 2012 at 4:59 pm

        Who’s paying for the two other attorneys? Has Lynn extricated himself from the AD?

  4. If you are an attorney for Lynn and the AD foots your bill…how would you advise your client?

    And they have the gall to call the victims’ lawyers greedy? Let’s all think rainbows and unicorns while we imagine the attorneys are appealing for the purest of intentions.

  5. Kate FitzGerald (hadit) Reply August 6, 2012 at 3:07 am

    I’m surprised Sarmina is hearing this motion. I read somewhere, maybe in one of Ralph’s old pieces, that, once Sarmina sentenced Lynn, any further motions and appeals would be heard by a judge other than herself.

    I think “the better than 50-50 chance” argument the defense will put forth has no concrete substance to it whatsoever. The defense team will happily put forth any number of baseless motions and arguments as long as the AD will pay for it. The AD will pay for it as long as the pew sheep pay for it. Doesn’t anyone get how the ongoing Lynn legal show acts to pierce and re-pierce the hearts and souls of victims?

    The way the Catholic Church continues to deny its crimes, avoid accountability, pay out to defend errant clerics, lobby against SOL reform, investigate itself, and treat victims like annoying pests is unconscionable.

    Chaput, you are the ringleader of this unconscionable farce. Christ is cringing.

    • I still can’t get over the fact that under Chaput’s administration over $11 MILLION was paid out in the defense of Lynn, Avery and Brennan. Why haven’t the parishioners in his Archdiocese Mutinied or sent him packing back to Rome! (As a Coloradan, we don’t want him back in Denver, EVER!”

  6. I posted this on the last story, but it was at the very bottom. I wanted to make sure more people saw it, althought it doesn’t exactly fit this post.

    This link is to Fr. Tom Doyle’s interview on the Australian web site
    http://www.catholica.com.au/gc2/td/index.php

    Fr. Tom Doyle was the Cannon Law expert that testifies at Lynn’s trial

    • C.M. -Tom Doyle is the best!

    • choices the victims makes about the place or religion, worship or a higher power in his or her life.

      • Oops

        Thomas Doyle in 2008 at a SNAP conference spoke of his early church ‘learnings’ and after many years working with victims …..his ‘later’ Church understanding…Doyle sees the average catholic as ‘early adolescent’ in spiritual belief and development…and dependent on hierarchical input.  Doyle contends that abuse victims need to get way beyond such stuff for their own sake…I have put comments in in CAPs and picked and chose from the longer and shorter version of Doyle’s remarks….special thanks to C M Whelan

        Though such a belief in God as a super-being perpetually angry, especially over sexual matters, runs contrary to the teachings of Christ in the gospels, it is nevertheless dominant in Church teaching and in the image of God commonly held by victims and non-victims alike.

        …..Traditional Catholic spirituality is commonly associated with self-denial, participation in liturgical rituals, dependence on the clergy and the prescriptive pronouncements of the Church for spiritual security. The pre-Christian Stoic dualism that heavily influenced the formation of the primitive Church’s sexual ethic is still evident in the emphasis on self-denial and the exaltation of sexual abstinence.[26] Catholics believe that the sacraments are their primary source for spiritual security since the Church teaches that they are necessary for salvation.[27] They are dependent on the clergy for the sacraments since the clergy have the power to judge eligibility for them and are the actual ministers for all but one of the sacraments.[28] Thus Catholic spirituality is essentially a dependent spirituality. Lay persons occupy the passive role with clerics as the actors. Since a secure spirituality involves being both obedient to Church teachings and being as free from sin as possible, it is obvious how essential a role priests play. KEY Catholics are not taught to take responsibility for their spiritual choices. They are told what to choose and that an opposite choice brings the opprobrium of the clergy and its consequent feelings of guilt.

        …… This sense of rejection is made even worse when segments of the lay community turn against victims or their family members.

        KEY Although the duplicitous response of a lay community is the proper subject for a whole other study a brief consideration is important for it is an essential element in the victims’ spiritual trauma. When victims or their families have “gone public” and engaged the Church in an embarrassing legal battle, the common response is defensiveness and denial.37 

        KEY Going public with a report of sexual abuse by a priest, especially a highly regarded priest often brings a strong backlash from the community. Victims are naturally bewildered and shocked that lay people, especially parents, would support a man who has sexually assaulted vulnerable children or adolescents. 

        KEYThe disclosure rocks the belief system of many in the community because it threatens the symbols that give them spiritual security. They refuse to believe that a priest has committed such a heinous act because they cannot believe it. There is often a defensive reaction whereby the abuse victim is treated as a criminal. His or her crime is not so much in accusing the sacred person of a priest, .. .KEY but in threatening the security of the dependent spirituality of some members of the community. It is not so much that some lay people do not believe the abuse took place. It is more that they cannot bear the emotional pain that comes with accepting the reality of betrayal by a trusted priest. 

        KEYThe same can be said of evidence of the institutionalized cover-up. Many simply cannot bear the emotional shock of betrayal by the institutional Church.

        BUT FOR THE VICTIMS: The first level of response should be to the victim’s self-destructive belief system.

        KEY The immediate concern should be the victims’ concept of a priest. He or she needs to be aided and supported in shedding the magical notion that the priest is somehow the personal representative of God or the stand-in for God. The dependence of the victim on the priest and on the clerical system needs to be first challenged and then replaced with a deeply rooted sense of personal spiritual autonomy. VERY VERY KEY??This “adult spirituality” of the victim-priest relationship will bring freedom from the misplaced guilt that burdens so many victims.

        The victim’s anger at the Church and possibly at religion in general needs to be acknowledged and affirmed as a healthy response to the abuse. 

        If it has not been done earlier in the recovery process this might be the appropriate time to examine the radical distinction between organized religion and spiritual security and strength. 

        The toxic belief that God will be displeased if the victim feels anger towards the Church must be dispelled and replaced with a more realistic belief that the organized religious body has actually been a barrier to a secure relationship with the Higher Power. YES !!!!!
        Victims attribute spiritual power to the visible Church because it has been presented as the only pathway to God.

        KEY.. Most Catholics are never allowed to progress beyond a level of spiritual and religious development that is early-adolescent at best. The recovery process from clergy sexual abuse offers a unique opportunity for spiritual maturity. This maturity will provid the emotional security needed for whatever choices the victims makes about the place or religion, worship or a higher power in his or her life.

    • I put in a comment (awaiting moderation) relating to CM Whelan’s link, dealing particularly with the written Doyle remarks, both the short and long version.

      I have reread the Doyle talk three times and cannot encourage victims and all C4C folks strongly enough to access that data.

      It is, hands down the best I have ever seen. It explains the spiritual trauma that clergy abuse causes. Any therapist working with victims would profit from reading this, and would that the hierarchy digest it.

      It’s absolutely terrific.

  7. I was not able to respond earlier about the life sentence for the KC priest. Thank you, Kathy, for providing details on what he did in regard to taking photographs of young children or infants. I do not think it’s fair to give him life in prison, 40 years, for taking photos, even if he took the photos with a sexual intention. There must be some proportionality in sentencing. And taking photos of sleeping children is not the equivalent of the most serious crimes that occur. I think it is a witch hunt to put him in prison for 40 years for taking photos. Two years in prison is a serious penalty, to be followed by 8 years of supervised probation. If there is any recurrence, he can be sent back to prison for longer. You are doing an injustice to support life imprisonment in that case; taking a photo of sleeping children is not the same as, I won’t even say what the others have done. I think he can be reformed, rehabilitated. It’s vengeful to put him away for life as the first penalty, without a chance to show change. That’s vengeance. I see so often it’s the christians who cry out for vengeance, often the death penalty or maximum prison sentence, and so rarely for forgiveness, which is the center of their religion. I can see that perhaps people here are frustrated that clerics get away with so much, that the KC priest has become a scapegoat. But he did not do what the others have done. Perhaps he can be rehabilitated, and if he cannot be, there is always time later to re-sentence him to prison. It’s those that have covered up, and continue to do so, at the higher levels, that deserve lengthy sentences.

    • Those who cover up deserve lengthy sentences as do those who abuse children. The children were not just sleeping,he removed the clothes of a sleeping child and took pictures of her. After the Church sent him for treatment to be rehabilitated he again took more photos of children. He plead guilty to these 5 cases ,I believe there were actually 13 victims and the evidence spans over 7 years.The interesting thing is that laws for child pornography have been strengthened in recent years because of the explosion of child porn via the internet, so some of those sentences exceed other penalties for abuse of children. I have no vengeance or hate or demanding of a death penalty ,I just want this man away from children, if he offends again that means another child is now a victim.

    • Mark,
      Missing from your synopsis of rehabilitation and second chances (Ratigan’s had more than 2 chances), are the violated children.

      I believe the problem is not that Ratigan’s sentence was too long, but that the sentences for those who have done more horrific things to children aren’t long enough.

      I hope Ratigan can be rehabilitated. I want to know how he got to a point where he spent his time seeking out children to violate. We need to know so we can prevent future “Ratigan behavior.” That isn’t vengeful, that’s honoring children. We either protect the abusers or we protect the children…a loose quote by Marci Hamilton.

      Many victims will tell you that one of the most painful things is to know their abuse was completely preventable.

      I’m in complete agreement with you about the enablers. Finn is on the hook for placing children at risk when he knowingly looked the other way with Ratigan. He deserves a lengthy prison term too and I hope he gets it. Not because I’m vengeful, but because I value and honor children. What kind of a country do we live in that allows children to be posed pornagraphically, spread around the internet and then says, “It’s only pictures?” Apparently, a judge who values children sentenced Ratigan, who, by the way, willingly said he was guilty to every single charge. Who knows what Finn will get, if anything. BUT, that’s because the laws of our land are horrendous when it comes to the value we place on children.

      • survivors wife, Finn is facing one misdemeanor count of failure to report,if convicted not much jail time at all …probably probation. Certainly these laws need to be strengthened. Failure to report is a misdemeanor third degree in Pa,the penalty could be as little as a fine such as a speeding ticket.
        I agree with what you said about Ratigan,he chose to plead guilty and accept the sentence, he could have chosen gone to trial.

      • Kate FitzGerald (hadit) Reply August 6, 2012 at 4:51 pm

        Finn’s charge is a misdemeanor I believe. Ratigan is a felon. The chances of getting time for a misdemeanor are small BUT, between Penn State creating a paradigm in terms of how institutions should respond to incidences of child sexual abuse and the hierarchy’s utter defiance of it, and Ratigan pleading guilty to all charges, we might see a Kansas City judge compelled to slam Finn at sentencing time. I see this as very likely. The hierarchy can expect it more and more. It should act as a game-changer for the draconian episcopates but don’t put your money on it. For them, it’s denial all the way and on the purse strings of the faithful. Inept and arrogant imbeciles.

      • A misdemeanor. wow.

    • Ratigan entered a guilty plea for numerous crimes of child pornography in Federal court. Here in the U. S. there are sentencing guidelines for Federal judges to use when sentencing criminals who are convicted or enter guilty pleas for their crimes and the judge in Ratigan’s case followed them to the letter. Ratigan has been sentenced, not to life in prison, but to numerous sentences for numerous crimes which, because of the overwhelming number of his crimes, total many years.

      Your sympathy for this man is sadly misplaced.

      • I agree,this has nothing to do with Ratigan being a scapegoat for the hierarchy. He was sentenced in federal court for his crimes just as any other citizen of the U.S.

  8. Whether Lynn gets out on appeal or if his conviction is overturned are all valid concerns however what has come to light in the Philadelphia AD is quiet disturbing yet many parishioners do not want to hear about let alone accept that there “is” not “was” a problem and there are many victims. This whole deal is not about a couple of bad priests who raped young children. It is about an intuition that cloaks itself in secrecy and has allowed and I would go so far as to say, condoned these terrible acts. That being said, how does a parishioner continue to be an active participant in the Catholic Church, especially here in the Philadelphia AD? How does one, with a clear conscious, go to church every Sunday, sit in the pew and write the check? By being a Pew Sheep you are condoning the acts that have and continue to take place in the Philadelphia AD. What happen to being a Christian first folks? A good Christian would not condone these acts he or she would seek out change so no one else would be hurt and at the same time comfort those who have been betrayed. Just because you go to church every Sunday, or grew up attending this parish or went to Saint so and so for grade school or high school does NOT MAKE YOU A GOOD CATHOLIC. The challenge I put worth to the Pew Sheep is to stop drinking the Kool Aide and challenge your local parish priests and the Philadelphia AD and push for changes within OUR church otherwise you are just condoning that acts of hurtful i.e. you are guilty by association…What would Jesus do today?

  9. Amen.

  10. Judge M. Teresa Sarmina is a “no nonsense” judge. She is not one to waste time. Three of us sat in court today to hear her stand strong in her position. We left the courtroom feeling justified on behalf of all the victims of priest pedophilia.

    • Kate FitzGerald (hadit) Reply August 6, 2012 at 6:19 pm

      Another fine report from Theresa who consistently exemplifies her support of victims by consistently being in the courtroom. I want her to know I’ve noticed her ongoing dedication and I very much appreciate it. Thanks, Theresa, and thanks to your companions as well.

  11. Interesting article which speaks of the AD capping the defense fund and also some info on Bernard Shero the Catholic school lay teacher going on trial in September.

    http://abcnews.go.com/US/wireStory/philadelphia-priest-denied-bail-amid-appeal-16938793#.UCAGxY7FUfE

    • Interesting how this article you posted Kathy, from ABC quotes the AD statement as “strongly convinced that there were many errors” Vs. the AD statement that says they were strongly CONVICTED…..” hmmmm

  12. Kate (hadit), thank you for your kind words. It was indeed a privilege to be there in support of my brother, my nephew and all the victims from Philly.

  13. A must read, it seems that the Philly AD is a little confused as to what is going on.

    http://www.priestabusetrial.com/2012/08/judge-denies-bail-for-monsignor-while.html#more

    • In dioceses, throughout the US, other Lynn’s must be a bit nervous.

    • As I suggested before, Kathy, Chaput just wants to see Lynn disappear into the prison mist. Lynn played the role Rigali scripted for him–he didn’t point the finger at Rigal, so now the Philly AD can discard him..

      As far as Chaput and Rigali are apparently concerned, Lynn can rot in jail for six years. Hopefully, the Philly AD can some way get Lynn to testify now in the other trials. Perhaps now Lynn realizes how badly Rigali used him.

      Lynn was not only a loser, he was a sucker. Having a pro bono appellate lawyer at this point is farcical, especially when the lawyer knows Chaput has closed his purse signaling that the Philly Ad has written Lynn off.

      Rigali and Chaput now appear to be trying to save money on Lynn’s appellate lawyers to have it available for Rigali’s own defense lawyers, assuming Seth Williams ever finds the fortitude to pursue Rigali.

      • Jerry, when I saw Lynn testify I saw someone who was still very much a company man but that was when he was surrounded by his legal team that the AD was funding. Now he sits alone in prison …I wonder how long before he wakes up one day and asks to speak to the DA and spills the beans on everything? I imagine even a few weeks in prison can change someone’s loyalty.

      • I meant the Philly DA, Seth Williams, can now get Lynn to testify. Now that Lynn realizes he has been screwed by the Philly AD’s de facto firing of his appeal lawyers, Lynn may have a “fuller recollection” of the role played by the teflon Eminence, Rigali, with the 37 suspended priests.

        You have to acknowledge that Rigali and Chaput are very consistent–consistently arrogant and ruthless, that is. Lynn must have known this, yet he still played the fool.

        Let other subordinates at the Philly AD take heed and not repeat Lynn’s sucker performance. They would be better served tesifying against their bosses and cutting plea deals than relying on their bosses’ deceptive “help”.

    • Poor Jeff Lindy, what to do now that the gravy train has pulled into the station. A “minimum of $750,000” could have done quite a bit of good rather than lining the self serving pockets of the defenders of the indefensible. What a waste.

    • Could it be they (AD) are reeling — finally under all the shame and guilt ,expense, etc.? After all, they are not invincible, nor infallible. One hopes!

  14. Come on now, Seth Williams > bring in Rigali, Cistone, Cullen, Bransfield, Gana and Cudemo. The truth must be revealed in their complicity. Only then will we have peace and true justice for the victims.

  15. Joan posted:
    Excerpt-“KEY.. Most Catholics are never allowed to progress beyond a level of spiritual and religious development that is early-adolescent at best. The recovery process from clergy sexual abuse offers a unique opportunity for spiritual maturity. This maturity willprovided the emotional security needed for whatever choices the victims makes about the place or religion, worship or a higher power in his or her life.”
    XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX
    This is in response to the whole post which I have quoted only an excerpt. The content of the post is fascinating in that one could quickly retort- ” it’s a Protestant polemic” and that would be IT. In this case we know it comes from Fr. Doyle and so we know better; however, Fr. Doyle doesn’t supply [IMO] an answer for the victim as to where to look for the things RCism
    couldn’t supply. I don’t believe those things can be found in Protestantism, because — being just another “ism” it comes far short of the answers.
    I truly believe that our God is doing something today that [for His own reasons] He has not done in the centuries since the canon of scripture was closed , Israel set aside ,and the Body of Christ begun to grow. And that is that God is finally allowing , through the exposure of the
    failures of a false religion, a counterfeit of the gospel of Christ, for many to extricate themselves from deception and spiritual error because they cannot continue to countenance
    the blatant and near obvious lie multitudes have believed even since the days of the original apostles we meet in the bible. To make what can be a “long story” short— victims will find their
    healing and salvation in the person of Christ and His gospel of grace for the present time—
    in the letters written for this singular purpose and inserted in their proper order within the bible.

  16. nichols1

    Well said! I pray for the victims/survivors and believe them…… Peace

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