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Everyone deserves a fair chance

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Posted: Thursday, October 4, 2012 12:00 am | Updated: 6:13 am, Thu Oct 4, 2012.

Like Erica Robinson, "Courts should not allow recovered memories," Aug. 23, I hope that Father Michael Kelly be given "a fair chance." I feel that prosecuting attorney John Manly and the Calaveras County Justice Department would be more than happy to allow Kelly his day in court. In fact, likely, such would become ecstatic.

It seems to me that Manly and Calaveras County hold all of the trump cards and Kelly has none. It is not surprising that Kelly ran.

Eugene F. Hanten


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  • terry polk posted at 8:15 am on Sat, Nov 17, 2012.

    Terry Posts: 2


    I am a 79 year old native of Stockton. I own farm property in Stockton, and in Calaveras County. In all my years of attending Mass at many Catholic Churches, no Priest has ever compared to the quality and sincerity of Father Michael Kelly. He was outstanding in his duty as Shepherd of his Flock. St. Joaquim Church was so full each Sunday, that additional spaces was added to accommodate his Faithful.

    Father Kelly Baptized our family babies, taught Catechism to our youngsters and NEVER was there anything but respect shown to all. Some in our family also became Alter Servers. Father Kelly performed the funeral services for my husband and both my parents. His kindness and holiness is truly a gift from his beloved God.

    Please understand that Father Michael Kelly was wrongly accused of sexual misconduct, and his trial was a farce. Any new accusation in Calaveras County should be thrown out.

    Jackie Tone Polk
    Stockton, California

  • Steve Golay posted at 7:55 am on Tue, Nov 6, 2012.

    Cadavera Vero Innumera Posts: 43

    Father Kelly now being discussed in the comment section here:


  • Steve Golay posted at 3:09 pm on Sat, Oct 27, 2012.

    Cadavera Vero Innumera Posts: 43

    This is very discouraging news regarding the here-to-fore respectable The Canon Law Society of America. They invited a benedictine priest/monk to present a paper at their event. The man had several allegations against him and an investigation has been initiated.


    Whom can be trusted?

  • Steve Golay posted at 8:39 am on Mon, Oct 15, 2012.

    Cadavera Vero Innumera Posts: 43

    Darrell, you wanted to explain the comment of yours I pointed out. You did, I accept.

  • Steve Golay posted at 8:27 am on Mon, Oct 15, 2012.

    Cadavera Vero Innumera Posts: 43

    TO BEGIN WITH: Please, Darrell, stop knotting the rope between myself and SNAP. I have never communicated with them. There is no association.

    Below, once more, is the link to the court summons to the pending San Andreas case. Read pages 7-11 of the summons. The Plaintiff, through his legal counsel, has detailed very specific acts which the accused made against his person. You tell us, which ones are falsely charged against the accused?

    Again and once more, this is not a situation of repressed memory being recollected and recovered. The Plaintiff will take the stand and describe in specific detail what occurred. He will be re-presenting to the jury events that have stayed fresh and firm in his memory – so much so because these events (these alleged actions of Fr. Kelly) arrested and froze his life at that point.

    Yes, it does come down to the creditability of testimony, the boy’s and Fr. Kelly’s. Why would Fr. Kelly’s testimony be any more so? It is Fr. Kelly who has a history, as detailed by the website maintained by Bishop Accountability. What is listed there is evidence, as much as the Plaintiff’s upcoming telling descriptions on the witness stand.

    How much of Fr. Kelly’s history will be permitted a hearing in court is up to the presiding judge; we pray the man’s full biography is. The whole of it is pertinent to the why and how of what happened in San Andreas, to the build-up to that day when Fr. Kelly knocked on that boy’s home – when “his parents were away”.

    In conclusion, your examples of justice abused and misapplied are interesting but not pertinent here. Am very pleased to know that often true justice as discovered and rectified, that the falsely accused are set free. But in San Andreas we are talking mostly about the credibility of testimony – the boy’s or Fr. Kelly’s.

    The law provides means to evaluate such testimony. The law recognizes the standing of such testimony in court in spite of the absence of “peeping-tom” witnesses to the alleged deeds, or those deeds leaving their stains and residue. Are you suggesting the court is blindsided in doing so? The image of Lady Justice blindfolded, though, is strikingly just – for not all evidence is visible and touchable. There is the evidence which comes by hearing, the cries of children stomped into the earth - or behind closed bedroom doors.

    FR. KELLY’S PAGE ON “BISHOP ACCOUNTABILITY”: While on the site go to the home page and read some of the survivor stories linked on the right. Scroll down a bit.


    COURT SUMMONS FOR THE SAN ANDREAS CASE: Read pages 7-11 of the Summons. Why would a 12-year-old old invent these accusations against the priest?


    MALE SURVIVOR: an excellent support service.




    THE “BOYS TOWN” SCANDAL: Read the Boys Town chapter in John DeCamp’s book (online pdf). The problem ran deep.


  • Darrell Baumbach posted at 7:45 am on Mon, Oct 15, 2012.

    Darrell Baumbach Posts: 9405

    Finally Mr Golay, Two SNAP officials implied I was a pedophile during the Trotter case simply because I enjoy Thailand culture and people and that I was convinced his trial was nothing more than a witch hunt. ... no one defended me from your side of the isle simply because I held a different position.

    Accusing people of things with no basis of fact is hideous. I will defend you however, as you do not deserve to be accused of anything just because of the position you hold. No evidence, no accusation should be made. I hope you understand I was making a point, not accusing you of anything.

  • Darrell Baumbach posted at 6:59 am on Mon, Oct 15, 2012.

    Darrell Baumbach Posts: 9405

    Mr Golay, I fight absurdity with absurdity. I was responding you your insult by doing what you did.

    You stated, ("Set-and-setting" is a theatrical term - which, by the way, is how a pedophile perceives his life - as an acting character, which makes him an expert at "grooming" and, as 'letters-to-the editors" in the local rags evidence, a deceiver of many.

    In my view, you are accusing people of crimes you could not possibly know to be true... who is it that you are calling a pedophile as evidenced in local rags in letter to the editors? I do not know you, I have no idea if you are a good or bad person. I have no reason to believe that you did anything wrong.

    You also are indifferent to the plight of innocent people who are convicted. You promote trials without evidence and pretend it is the right thing to do. You talked about the perfect crime … I think the Trotter case was a perfect crime against an innocent man.

    There was no way to defend or refute any accusation made by Trotter. This case to me is a nightmare.
    That you or I might be accused of a crime in the future and get convicted without any evidence is scary beyond belief.
    I was demonstrating to you that very thing .How does it feel it be questioned about something you might have done when I have absolutely no evidence. It is horrible.

    When you stated, “For that, Mr Darrell B., I must suffer the insult of your remark.”, I have a thought. How many people must suffer years in prison for a crime they did not commit because of vigilante justice like SNAP and you promote?

  • Steve Golay posted at 8:16 pm on Sun, Oct 14, 2012.

    Cadavera Vero Innumera Posts: 43


    Please refer to your post dated Oct 14, 2012, 5:06 (Sun). Second to last sentence.

    I find the content of that sentence inappropriate and off subject to my earlier post. I also find it near libelous. Would the ownership of this site (newspaper) find it likewise?

    My chore in this discussion, assigned by myself without any prompting from SNAP or the Plaintiff's counsel, is to defend the boy's right to tell his story in a court of law; this also includes his legal standing to seek the proper redress to the alleged harm down to to his person (past, present & future) by the one who sexually assaulted him (and those who could have prevented it if they had performed their duty as required by both civil and Natural Law).

    Where have I erred in doing so? What is the fault of my position? How have I failed the "judicial system" by acknowledging that the law recognizes that "facts in evidence" in a case such as this does not required a peeping-tom witness (as I had put it) or physical residue of bodily fluids or hair.

    This case evolves around the credibility of the Plaintiff's testimony. Such a presentation of the facts has its own obstacles to overcome. I know that.

    All I ask is that the boy is given his opportunity to make his presentation. Neither you nor I are in possession of what that testimony will entail. What telling particular, what detail will the boy give - would only be able to give - because the said sad incident(s) had occurred.

    There are many questions that can be raised. I shutter at their rising, and what they portend. Others don't get but I do. All these "friends of Fr Kelly" who write glowing reports of Kelly's conduct towards them and their own sons and daughters - submitting them as Letters to the Editors - are only setting forth a black cloth the better to shine the cold stones of dark deeds.

    Once more, I plead to all here to read the court summons submitted by the Plaintiff's attorney. Read the extremely detailed list of behaviors the boy is laying at Fr. Kelly's feet.

    The boy is telling the truth - or he is lying. The proceedings of the civil court will settle the issue.

    The "Friends of Fr. Kelly" are telling us that the boy is fabricating, charging falsely. I have chosen to believe the boy. I have my reasons for doing so.

    He who assaulted him, and those who may have given him cover and chosen not to bind him over to the civil courts, should be held to account.

    For that, Mr Darrell B., I must suffer the insult of your remark.

    God preserve us.

  • Darrell Baumbach posted at 4:46 am on Sun, Oct 14, 2012.

    Darrell Baumbach Posts: 9405

    Mr Golay stated...In this case, why would the boy from San Andreas lie?

    I am not god Mr Golay. I do not know why anyone would lie.

    May I ask you to please visit with Mr. David Wiggins and shake his hand. Ask him if he thinks it easy to convict an innocent man. Since he spent over 20 long torturous years in prison after a 14 year old victim helped put him in prison for a crime he did not commit. He was recently released after DNA evidence proved he could not have done it.
    So please do look him in the eye and explain why you think it is appropriate to have a trial where no evidence is presented. Also shake the hand of the other 84 innocent people in Texas who were imprisoned and later released after evidence later was presented that proved their innocence.
    Of course we want to protect children. They deserve our care and love but so did David Wiggins.

  • Steve Golay posted at 2:49 pm on Sat, Oct 13, 2012.

    Cadavera Vero Innumera Posts: 43

    Let us not forget that Pope Benedict 16th, the Good Friday before be became pope in '05, gave a clarion call regarding "the filthiness of priests". Made in the Colosseum in Rome, on the site of those who truly lived faithfulness and relinquished their lives to the roaring lions.

    A few days ago, again in Rome, during an especially called assembly of bishops, he repeated that message.

    And not too long before that, Pope Benedict gave a startling prediction that the Church may need to go through a trial in which it becomes visibly and painfully reduced as, it squeezes out all that faithless filth.

    If the saving and salvation of 12-year-old boys (assaulted behind closed bedroom doors) depends on that, let it be so.

  • Steve Golay posted at 2:34 pm on Sat, Oct 13, 2012.

    Cadavera Vero Innumera Posts: 43

    Josh, ask Darrell to break down and clarify this statement of his: "However, do we resort to vigilante justice and disregard a fair judicial system to gravitate to and end that justifies the means mentality? If so, we will end up with no one trusting the judicial system.

    Does he mean that in a case of pedophilia assault evidence against a defendant must include eye-witnesses to the event and/or bodily fluids left at the scene. (Photographic evidence, once passed the "photoshop" test, can suffice.)

    If evidence against a pedophile MUST include the above then such an assault almost becomes the perfect crime. For the one thing a pedophile will assiduously attend to would be the "set-and-setting" of the assault.

    ("Set-and-setting" is a theatrical term - which, by the way, is how a pedophile perceives his life - as an acting character, which makes him an expert at "grooming" and, as 'letters-to-the editors" in the local rags evidence, a deceiver of many. They are very good actors, controlling the entrance and exits of the stage - and the applauding mood of the audience.)

    Is not the testimony of a 11/12 year old boy - with no repressed memory to recover, by the way, enough? It all comes down the credibility of that boy's story. The law allows for that. A "fair judicial system" calls that sufficient standing. That same judicial system permits the same standing room for the defensive in its task to show the court (and jury) that the plaintiff (the boy) is lying - and that, under oath.

    In this case, why would the boy from San Andreas lie? There is going to be something (some aspect, some telling detail) in his testimony that will stamp the seal of credibility on his story. The jury will know that truth is being told in spite of the absence of peeping-tom eyes through the window and stray bodily fluids on the floor and sheets.

    Truth is always the evidence, especially in a "fair judicial system".

  • Kevin Paglia posted at 7:50 pm on Fri, Oct 5, 2012.

    Kevin Paglia Posts: 2110

    How do we prevent more victims from ANY preditor (not just a church or an organization)?

    This is all about education. Preditors WILL find a way to be alone with their victims, that is a sad truth. BUT if we, as a society have a very active, loud and even aggressive education system starting with very young kids (age appropriate) then EVERYONE, even the preditors know the chances of getting reported are VERY high. Children need to know they HAVE to protect themselves and the most protective statement they can make is "I am going to tell!" They need to know that SCREAMING if someone, anyone touched them inappropriately is completely justified.

    This education needs to be part of our schools, churches and any organization tat deals with kids. It should be so prolific that preditors are afraid to look at kids walking down the street!

    Anyway, that is my two sense.

  • Darrell Baumbach posted at 6:23 pm on Fri, Oct 5, 2012.

    Darrell Baumbach Posts: 9405

    According to http://www.minddisorders.com

    Prevention (pedophilia)

    The main method for preventing pedophilia is avoiding situations that may promote pedophilic acts. Children should never be allowed to in one-on-one situations with any adult other than their parents or trustworthy family members. Having another youth or adult as an observer provides some security for all concerned. Conferences and other activities can be conducted so as to provide privacy while still within sight of others.

    Children should be taught to yell or run if they are faced with an uncomfortable situation. They should also be taught that it is acceptable to scream or call for help in such situations.

    Another basis of preventing pedophilia is education. Children must be taught to avoid situations that make them vulnerable to pedophiles. Adults who work with youth must be taught to avoid situations that may be construed as promoting pedophilia.

    Many states have adopted legislation that requires periodic background investigations of any adult who works with children. These persons may be paid, such as teachers, or they may be volunteers in a youth-serving organization.

    The Boy Scouts of America has tried to address the problem of pedophilia by creating a training program that is required for all adults in the organization. All applications for volunteers are reviewed and approved by several persons. Adults and youth are required to use separate facilities on all activities. Secret meetings and one-on-one interactions between adults and youth are prohibited. This program has received several national awards

    Read more: Pedophilia - children, causes, DSM, functioning, therapy, adults, person, people http://www.minddisorders.com/Ob-Ps/Pedophilia.html#ixzz28TgNWn4f

  • Darrell Baumbach posted at 6:22 pm on Fri, Oct 5, 2012.

    Darrell Baumbach Posts: 9405

    Josh asks... How do we keep these guys/gals from existing in our communities?

    Josh, Best question of the thread. That should be the focus and serious thought, energy and resources should be dedicated to answering that question.

    However, a trail having no evidence cannot be the solution. I wish I had the answers.
    My gut tells me educating parents children in utilizing prevention techniques is one part? Another is to make it a bigger priority in our society to determine the causes of Pedophilia.

    It appears that in the mental health field,Most experts regard pedophilia as resulting from psychosocial factors rather than biological characteristics. Some think that pedophilia is the result of having been sexually abused as a child. Still others think that it derives from the person's interactions with parents during their early years of life. Some researchers attribute pedophilia to arrested emotional development; that is, the pedophile is attracted to children because he or she has never matured psychologically. Some regard pedophilia as the result of a distorted need to dominate a sexual partner. Since children are smaller and usually weaker than adults, they may be regarded as nonthreatening potential partners. This drive for domination is sometimes thought to explain why most pedophiles are males.

  • Darrell Baumbach posted at 6:06 pm on Fri, Oct 5, 2012.

    Darrell Baumbach Posts: 9405


    David Lee Wiggins, 48, of Fort Worth was imprisoned in 1989 for rape, largely because the 14-year-old victim picked him out of photo and live lineups. His fingerprints did not match any at the crime scene. Still, he was sentenced to life in prison.
    This month DNA testing excluded Wiggins, and on Friday, State District Judge Louis Sturns in Fort Worth approved a motion overturning his conviction and freed him
    In Texas, 84 people have been exonerated since 1989, according to the National Registry of Exonerations created by the University of the Michigan Law School and the Center on Wrongful Convictions at Northwestern University School of Law.

  • Darrell Baumbach posted at 6:06 pm on Fri, Oct 5, 2012.

    Darrell Baumbach Posts: 9405

    Josh stated...You've certainly cited examples of misusing the "system" but I'm more concerned about getting pedophiles off the street...

    Actually Josh, I am equally concerned about getting pedophiles off the street and into jail to protect child. However, do we resort to vigilante justice and disregard a fair judicial system to gravitate to and end that justifies the means mentality? If so, we will end up with no one trusting the judicial system.

    We also will end up with more and more of the following...
    Texan wrongly convicted of rape freed after 24 years in prison
    August 25, 2012|By Molly Hennessy-Fiske

    HOUSTON — In what’s becoming a familiar scenario in Texas, a man has been freed after spending years behind bars for a crime he did not commit.

  • Josh Morgan posted at 9:25 am on Fri, Oct 5, 2012.

    Josh Morgan Posts: 542

    Darrell, I'm still trying to figure out how this can be fixed. You've certainly cited examples of misusing the "system" but I'm more concerned about getting pedophiles off the street. We raise our children believing in Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny and for them want want to continue to believe is understandable. Abuse is a whole different story. It's very easy for me to understand why young children will not disclose abuse and continue to be ashamed, afraid, etc. for a long period of time. I'm guessing that there are large numbers of individuals that still have not come forward, even as adults for the pain and suffering they will again endure. But I can also understand why years later as an adult you come to the realization that it's wrong and there are other children out there that might be prevented from the abuse if it's finally disclosed. No evidence, just personal experience. I'm sorry to keep raising the Jerry Sandusky situation but it's a prime example. This guy was abusing children for years and would still be doing so today if he wasn't discovered. How do we keep these guys/gals from existing in our communities?

  • Darrell Baumbach posted at 5:31 am on Fri, Oct 5, 2012.

    Darrell Baumbach Posts: 9405

    Provided by Allen N. Cowling ... lawyer as expert in Defending False Allegations of Abuse

    A false allegation of sexual abuse is a lie and more often than not, that lie will grow following the initial disclosure, for many reasons. For survival and defense purposes, it is vital that anyone being falsely accused understand the mechanics of why the story becomes expanded, simply because they will probably find themselves accused of one thing one minute and something else the next. This also includes why there is one child accuser initially and then several others make allegations as time passes.

    First, think carefully about what usually happens when a child tells a lie about anything. Obviously, they want to be believed, so they carefully watch the person they are telling the lie to in order to see if what they are saying is being accepted or not. Don't think that a child, even of tender years, is incapable of easily reading visual reactions. If a young girl told her mother or father that she had seen Santa Claus, she would probably continue her story or not depending on the reaction she got. If her mother or father smiled and said, "You did?" that would signal the child that they are being believed. Now, suppose the same parent said, "Really, and what was he doing, or where was he?" the child may begin supplying details, even to the point of saying they actually talked to Santa. The fact is, although innocent, the story is still a fabrication, but positive support of that fabrication usually leads to additional fabrication.

    Now, a child does not have to have positive reinforcement to expand on fabrication. Expansion can also result from negative reinforcement. If, in the same story above, the young girl told her father that she saw Santa and his reaction was, "Oh come on, you know he does not exist," the child's response could easily become, "Yes, he does, he put me in his sleigh and I talked to him." Again, a fabrication, but again an example that a child is capable of expanding a fabrication whether there is positive reinforcement or not.

    Unfortunately, most people believe that a child will lie about Santa, the Easter Bunny or whether they did their homework or not, but would never lie about something as serious as being touched or sexually molested. What most adults fail to realize is the fact that most children have no real concept about how serious a false allegation is when they make it or what the consequences may be. The do not look at allegations of abuse in the same light as an adult does. Now, I am speaking about false allegations, not genuine abuse, but when a child does make a false allegation, they are not consumed with the same internal rage that the adult who hears about it is, at least not initially.

    In order to honestly understand the mechanics behind the growth of allegations, one needs to examine what normally transpires from the initial disclosure, forward and, once again, I am speaking only about false allegations, not real abuse.

  • Darrell Baumbach posted at 5:15 am on Fri, Oct 5, 2012.

    Darrell Baumbach Posts: 9405

    Josh stated... Our legal system has a statute of limitations..

    Yes, and our legal system changes and evolves as new court cases are completed.

    I am saying a future court case can rely on past court cases. The Trotter case established that evidence ( someone's old claimed memories) is enough to find someone guilty in a court of law without "any" physical evidence, witnesses or any corroborating evidence to support the accuser. Since the future is not here yet, no one can say for sure if future cases that are not child abuse cases will refer to the Trotter case or cases like it to make a legal argument in a court of law.

    Another example of how evolution of our legal system changes....

    We were told many years ago that Sharia Law could never be recognized in United States. However, there have now been over 50 cases in American courts where Sharia Law has been considered and accepted where the outcome of the court cases were influenced by Sharia Law. Now, future court cases can rely on these 50 cases already decided which makes Sharia law part of our legal system.

    No one is saying that children should be ignored if they accuse someone of abuse. In fact, the most innocent and helpless among us deserve aggressive strong support to protect them. However, we must also be careful not to convict innocent people accused of crimes. No evidence can easily lead to convicting innocent people.

  • Josh Morgan posted at 10:18 am on Thu, Oct 4, 2012.

    Josh Morgan Posts: 542

    Our legal system has a statute of limitations that would apply to most cases you are referencing and therefore not go to court. (I don't recall what the time limitations are.) Child abuse is very unique in that the victims are much too young to pursue a claim. Can you imagine a seven year old walking into a police station asking to file a claim against his pee wee little league coach. It's just not going to happen. And again, what evidence will he/she be able to produce? The victim is usually threatened with all kinds of ramifications if "they tell". These pedophiles are very clever and usually the victims are the most vulnerable. If someone hadn't walked in on Jerry Sandusky he would probably still be assaulting young children. And look how long he got away with it. It's a very complex issue and I wish I had the answers. Many of these children never recover from the shock and horror of their abuse.

  • Darrell Baumbach posted at 8:15 am on Thu, Oct 4, 2012.

    Darrell Baumbach Posts: 9405


    In my view, even if it happened, this case should not go to court because in our legal system, evidence is crucial to considering to entertain the possibility of going to trial... no evidence, no trial.

    Back to the Trotter case... a juror stated they were presented “no evidence”... yet felt compelled to find father Kelly guilty. That to me means that all people in all situations can be found guilty using the no evidence standard.

    Everyone is horrified at the thought of a child abused ...including me. I want these abusers prosecuted and punished as does any reasonable person, especially people who have their own children who cannot imagine anything bad coming their way.

    Even though my heart goes out to any victim of abuse or any other serious crime, the ends do not justify the means. We cannot try a case in law without evidence no matter what, if we want integrity in our system of law and justice. This is why the Supreme Court of Texas has stated no repressed memory case will be heard in their state as the evidence is too old and unreliable.

  • Darrell Baumbach posted at 8:12 am on Thu, Oct 4, 2012.

    Darrell Baumbach Posts: 9405

    Josh, thank you for asking such an important question (in my opinion) that deserves thought and reflection.

    I have been saying all along that this case is important and has ramifications far beyond child abuse. This is about the integrity of our system of justice and people having confidence and faith that all people are treated fairly under the law.

    Let's remove child abuse out of the discussion temporarily. Let's assume that any serious crime is committed by someone. Lets say that the man who suffered that crime did not know about the crime until 25 years after the fact. He becomes aware of it through a hypnotist and therapist and decides to sue. However, there are no witnesses, no physical evidence or any proof that a crime took place . He is 100 % sure it happened and for argument sake, let us say it really happened.

  • Josh Morgan posted at 7:18 am on Thu, Oct 4, 2012.

    Josh Morgan Posts: 542

    Darrell, for the sake of this discussion lets take Father Kelly out of the equation and accept that repressed memory should not be allowed in court. We know that young children have been abused by family members, coaches, teachers, scout leaders, etal. At what point it is reasonable for a six to ten year old to come forward and present his/her case? Of course this child is probably scared, ashamed or may not even realize what is happening at the time of the abuse. What if the victim has never forgotten what has happened but only chooses to come forward at a later age? How long does the victim have to expose the situation? Unless there is an actual credible witness what "evidence" does he or she have to present to get these monster's off the street?

  • Darrell Baumbach posted at 4:26 am on Thu, Oct 4, 2012.

    Darrell Baumbach Posts: 9405

    Until the case of Travis Trotter is overturned and the 3.7 million paid back, I cannot imagine how father Kelly could get a fair trial by another accuser that has no evidence.. How can anyone defend themselves against an accuser where that person has to prove he did "not" do something 25 years ago. He cannot refute any evidence presented since there is none.

    It appears our justice system has been replaced with vigilante witch hunts where evidence is not important. We all should be in fear as anyone could be next.

    Imagine a teacher having to defend himself from a student he had not seen in 30 years with all evidence, witnesses and memories long gone.


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