Dallas police on Wednesday morning raided several Dallas Catholic Diocese offices after a detective said church officials have “thwarted” his investigations into allegations of sexual abuse by priests.
Detective David Clark wrote in a search warrant affidavit that he uncovered new allegations while the diocese hid past allegations against priests, turned over incomplete records and made it nearly impossible for Dallas police to determine whether claims had been made or fully examined. Clark also took the diocese to task for its recent transparency efforts, characterizing them as little more than a public-relations effort.
Dallas Bishop Edward J. Burns said at an afternoon news conference that the diocese had given personnel files “for all the priests named in the warrant” and had been has been cooperating with the police requests.
Burns said throughout the “collaboration with the police, there are some who are not satisfied and want to look for themselves,” he said.
“We know we have given them the files. And so we say, ‘By all means, look.'”
Police investigators will do so. Officers, along with federal authorities, took files from the diocese’s headquarters, a storage site and St. Cecilia, a Catholic church in Oak Cliff, where the priest who sparked the investigation previously served.
Police Maj. Max Geron, who oversees the special investigations division, called the raids “wholly appropriate” for the investigation.
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