Former archbishops criticised over handling of Dublin abuse
Chapter 20 of Murphy report published this afternoon
While in Dublin then he abused a nine year old altar boy.
McCabe returned to the US briefly but was back in Dublin by 1987 unknown to Church authorities. He got a job in a school. When the archdiocese heard of this the school was informed about McCabe’s history and he was removed.
In January 1988 a meeting of Dublin’s Auxiliary Bishops, attended by Archbishop-elect Desmond Connell, was told that he had assaulted a 14-year-old boy at a school Mass.
Rome was contacted and asked that Fr McCabe “be reduced to the lay state as quickly as possible “otherwise immense scandal and damage will ensue both for the Church and the priesthood in this Diocese.”
McCabe was sent to St Patrick’s psychiatric hospital in Dublin. While there he told diocesan authorities he had secured a job with homeless people at Stockton, California. They established it involved adults only.
McCabe left hospital in February 1988. Then, and in one of its most damning conclusions, the Murphy report concluded: “The bishops decided to let him go to the USA. They, in effect, set him loose on the unsuspecting population of Stockton, California. There is no record that they notified the bishop of Stockton of his arrival.”
In May 1988 the diocese of Sacramento became aware of McCabe’s presence in California and, as the Murphy report put it, “assumed, wrongly of course, that the Dublin Archdiocese might not have been aware of his presence in Stockton.” Sacramento informed Dublin that it (Sacramento) had a duty which they intended to fulfil, to notify Stockton about McCabe, which they did.
Most of Murphy’s criticisms of the Garda concerned the handling of the 1986 allegation of abuse of a nine year old boy, reported by the boy’s parents.
When that incident took place then Fr McCabe was staying in a west Dublin house owned by Chief Superintendent Joe McGovern. McCabe was interviewed by two gardai in connection with this incident but the file went missing.
That same evening McCabe visited Chief Superintendent Joe McGovern and
there, according to the Murphy report, he “made certain limited admissions to the chief superintendent who did not convey them to the investigating garda, but who did convey them and the fact of the Garda investigation to his local parish priest, Fr Curley.”
Explaining this to the Murphy Commission Chief Superintendent McGovern
said “he considered Fr McCabe’s behaviour to be a matter for the Church to deal with.”
The Murphy report said “the detective garda handling the investigation contacted an official in the office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) seeking advice. The investigation stopped. No further inquiries were made by the gardaí.”
It said that “even though the gardaí knew that Fr McCabe intended to return to the USA, no warrant was sought for his arrest.”
A copy of the boy’s statement given to gardaí was forwarded to Church authorities which, gardai interviewed by the Murphy Commission, agreed was “entirely improper.”
The Murphy report concluded that “the Archdiocese’s handling of events was facilitated in significant ways by the gardaí.”
It added “the Commission is of the view that this particular Garda investigation was marred by Church interference which was facilitated by the gardaí and which was material in allowing Fr McCabe to evade justice.”