Pope Francis acknowledged Saturday that the Vatican has a 2,000-case backlog in processing clerical sex abuse cases and says criticism of the slow pace was justified. But he says more staff are being added and insists the Vatican is “on the right path.” Francis was making his first comments about the criticism leveled at the Vatican’s handling of sex abuse cases by Marie Collins, an Irish abuse survivor who resigned from Francis’ sex abuse advisory commission in March. Collins quit because of what she said was the “unacceptable” level of resistance within the Vatican to implementing the group’s proposals to better care for victims and protect children from priests who rape and molest them.
PENNSYLVANIA — Police have found the body a young female believed to be a 13-year-old girl abducted Tuesday, authorities said Thursday night. An Ashtabula man suspected of kidnapping Kara Zdanczewski of Ashtabula was nabbed Thursday afternoon by police in Sharon, Pa., authorities said. The suspect did not bring Kara back home after an outing, police said. The Pennsylvania State Police Major Crimes Unit identified the man as 46-year-old John R. Bove, of Ashtabula. Initial reports, however, identified the man as from Pennsylvania. Bove is a registered sex offender in Ohio, according to the Ohio Attorney General’s database. He was convicted of rape in 1990 in New York.
SOUTH CAROLINA – When the University of South Carolina became NCAA women’s basketball champions early last month, longtime referee Wesley Dean was spending his 57th day in Cobb County jail on child molestation charges. Weeks later, a Cobb grand jury indicted him on two molestation charges and a count of enticing a child for indecent exposure, court records show. As of Thursday afternoon, Dean remained in jail without bond.
Twenty six men and two women appeared before a judge at Leeds Crown Court charged with offences including rape, trafficking, sexual activity with a child, child neglect, child abduction, supplying drugs and making of indecent images of children. The 29th defendant, who is in custody, did not appear for the hearing on Thursday. The defendants were greeted by protesters outside the court building, where a number of police were on duty. The allegations are non-recent sexual offences, dating back to between 2004 and 2011, and relate to 18 women, who were children at the time. The youngest child involved was 11 years old.
Scandinavian experts are urging the use of child-like sex dolls in a bid to stop pedophiles from abusing real life children. The Sexpo Foundation in Finland wants the disgusting dummies to be made available to pedophiles following a reported boom in imports in neighboring Norway. Norwegian cops revealed they are increasingly seizing creepy child-like sex dolls, mostly made in Hong Kong.
TOPEKA – A Kansas City, Kansas lawmaker has introduced a bill that would create an added penalty in child abuse cases in the wake of the death of a young boy who had been tortured and abused in his family’s home. Rep. Louis Ruiz, a Kansas City, Kan., Democrat, introduced Adrian’s Act on Friday. Ruiz said he and other members of the Wyandotte County delegation felt they should take responsibility and try to help.
Nearly 900 suspected pedophiles have been arrested and almost 300 children identified or rescued from their abusers following the massive takedown of an underground online pedophile network, US and European police said Friday. A more than two-year investigation into the notorious Playpen network and its members led to the arrests, the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Europol said, an announcement that came just days after a US court sentenced Playpen founder and administrator Steven Chase to 30 years in prison.
A Roman Catholic nun from Japan has been arrested and charged on suspicion of helping priests sexually abuse children at a school for youths with hearing disabilities in Argentina. Kosaka Kumiko, 42, was charged with helping the priests with anal and vaginal rapes, fondling and oral sex, which were allegedly committed in the bathrooms, dormitories, garden and a basement at the school in Lujan de Cuyo, a city about 620 miles northwest of Buenos Aires. The case against Kumiko began after a former student accused her of making her wear a diaper to cover up a hemorrhage after she was allegedly raped by priest Horacio Corbacho.
SIERRA VISTA, ARIZONA – The email arrived in the CBS 5 Investigates email inbox on April 7. The first line stood out to producer Edward Ayala. “I have information regarding the Arizona Board of Executive Clemency (Parole) releasing a serial killer, William Huff, into the community,” it read. Six days later, we were driving out of state to interview the woman who sent the email, to listen to the story of how a serial killer, who referred to himself as “The Phantom,” murdered two young girls and targeted a third, and how this person would be let out of prison and allowed to live in an unsuspecting Tucson neighborhood.
A Thai man filmed himself killing his 11-month-old daughter in two video clips posted on Facebook before committing suicide, police said on Tuesday. People could access the videos of the child’s murder on her father’s Facebook page for roughly 24 hours, until they were taken down around 5 p.m. in Bangkok on Tuesday, or about a day after being uploaded. The harrowing footage from Thailand showed Wuttisan Wongtalay tying a rope to his daughter Natalie’s neck before dropping the child, dressed in a bright pink dress, from the rooftop of a deserted building in the seaside town of Phuket.
NEVADA – A father is suspected of murdering of his 13-year-old son after family members found a nearly skeletal body that had been left decomposing for months. Paul Darell Jones, 33, who was already in jail for an unrelated child abuse case in 2015, has been named as a suspect in the death of his son, Aaron Jones. Two cousins searching for Aaron, who was last seen on December 31, found human remains wrapped up and covered with large rocks in Las Vegas, Nevada, on Tuesday.
FREEHOLD, N.J. – A convicted pedophile who used the messaging service on his Xbox to solicit nude photos from four boys in three states is heading to prison. Prosecutors in Monmouth County, New Jersey, say Gary Wolchesky received a 46-year sentence Friday. The 28-year-old was convicted in November on charges of aggravated sexual assault and child endangerment by manufacturing child pornography.
URUGUAY – The murder of Felipe Romero, age 10, at the hands of his soccer coach Fernando Sierra has shocked the country of Uruguay. The body of the child was found in a town near Montevideo. According to the local police chief, Sierra shot the boy in the head and then shot himself dead. “The adult had his back to the ground and the boy, face down, was partially holding the man with his head near his chest,” Sergio Mozzo, who was in charge of the autopsy. Mozzo also declared that the boy had been sexually abused on different occasions. “There was a violation. The marks that were found in the child showed erosion that possibly were from the same day or the previous day. He had signs of previously being abused repeatedly around the dimensions of the genital area.”
ALBUQUERQUE, New Mexico – Neighbors in a quiet Westside neighborhood say they were woken up to sirens and commotion. “When we looked outside to see what was going on, the place was surrounded by a bunch of cop cars,” said a neighbor. Officers were called to a home on Sheffield Place for an unresponsive 3-month-old baby. According to a criminal complaint, Anthony Serna is the father of the 3-month-old. He’s been charged with child abuse with great bodily harm.
Shauna Prewitt was a 21-year-old college senior in 2004 when she was raped and impregnated by her attacker. Her decision to keep her child — a baby girl — brought with it an unexpected twist: her rapist sought custody of their daughter when she was born.
ARIZONA – The death of a 6-month-old girl in southern Arizona has been ruled a homicide, according to her autopsy report. Baby Wyllow died in a hospital on Feb. 19, 2017. The report, which was released Friday, April 14, by the Pima County Medical Examiner’s Office, said Wyllow died from an infection brought on by blunt force injuries. She was also malnourished, which was listed as a serious contributing factor in her death.
OMAHA, Nebraska — State regulators say the Omaha day care of a woman suspected of abusing a child there has been ordered closed. Omaha police say 58-year-old Lynn Rowe has been charged with intentional child abuse, no injury. Police say she was being sought on an arrest warrant when she turned up Friday in Missouri Valley, Iowa. Her attorney declined to comment. She was arrested and transported to Omaha to face charges.
ST. PETERSBURG, Florida – Special agents with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) are seeking the public’s help to identify possible additional victims in an ongoing child sexual exploitation investigation involving a man who volunteered with Little League Baseball for the St. Pete Breeze.
TEXAS – Thirteen male athletes have been arrested at a Texas high school for what is being characterized as a sadistic hazing ritual where they allegedly anally raped at least 10 underclassmen with various objects. The small town of La Vernia, Texas, has been rocked by a major sexual assault case where nearly a dozen student athletes are accused of raping other students as a sports initiation practice, according to police. Three members of the basketball team at La Vernia High School, Colton Weidner, 18; Christian Roberts, 18; and John Rutkowski, 18, were arrested on a charge of second-degree felony sexual assault on Tuesday. This brings the total number of men arrested to 13, as six adult and seven juvenile students have been accused of the sexual assault where they allegedly raped at least 10 other male students with Gatorade and Coke bottles, flashlights and the threaded end of a carbon dioxide tank, according to police.
DELAWARE – Federal prosecutors have charged two airmen stationed at Dover Air Force Base with sexually abusing a teenage runaway they harbored on base. According to court records unsealed Thursday, Dalian Washington, 25, and Akeem Beazer, 21, waived their rights to preliminary hearings and are being detained pending trial. Both men are charged with sex abuse of a minor. Washington is also charged with sex trafficking of a child.
OUR MISSION: To educate the public on child abuse signs & symptoms, statistics, intervention, reporting, prevention & assist victims & survivors in locating the proper resources necessary to enable & achieve a full recovery.