Top

blog

Stories

 

Suit: Priest Admitted Sex Abuse to Archbishop Robert Carlson Who Attempted Coverup

archbishop-robert-carlson-headshot.jpg
via
Archbishop Robert Carlson.
This week, we've been covering the controversy of Father Xiu Hui "Joseph" Jiang, a St. Louis priest facing criminal charges that he repeatedly molested a teenage girl. In the wake of a high-profile subpoena, supporters of Jiang -- who are not directly affiliated with the Archdiocese of St. Louis -- have spoken up in his defense, arguing he is innocent.

Now, Daily RFT has learned that the family of the teenage girl has filed a lawsuit against church leadership that includes a lot of new details about the alleged acts of abuse -- and accuses Archbishop Robert Carlson of breaking the law in his attempts to cover it up.

The suit, full document on view below, says Carlson was very close with Jiang and that after the priest confessed to him directly, the archbishop told the family he would only remove Jiang "if he 'had sex' with the child, but not for activities other than that."

See also:
- Churchgoers Defend St. Louis Priest Accused of Sex Abuse, Pray in Private Group
- St. Louis Archdiocese Cancels Event to Pray for "Exoneration" of Accused Priest
- Fr. Joseph Jiang: Archbishop Robert Carlson Subpoenaed in Priest Sex Abuse Case

The suit contains several shocking accusations along those lines about the church's handling of this case.

"This is very difficult for her," Ken Chackes, the attorney representing the family, tells Daily RFT. "She's suffered a lot of emotional turmoil, a lot of emotional harm."

joseph-jiang.jpg
Joseph Jiang's mug shot.

The suit -- which argues that Carlson is liable for the sexual abuse the victim suffered -- paints a picture of an unstable priest who got very close to the family and used his role as a religious leader to repeatedly assault the girl in her own home.

A spokeswoman for the Archdiocese, which received a copy of the suit yesterday, tells Daily RFT in an e-mail, "These new allegations against the Archdiocese of St. Louis and Archbishop Carlson are false and will be denied in an answer to the lawsuit filed in court."

Last year, when the charges first surfaced, Jiang -- an associate pastor at the Cathedral Basilica of St. Louis -- was placed on administrative leave. The church statement at the time said none of the conduct is alleged to have occurred at the cathedral or on any archdiocesan property.

Jiang is from China and prior to being ordained in St. Louis was a Catholic deacon in Michigan under the supervision of Carlson, who was a bishop there at the time. The suit says that Jiang moved to Missouri when Carlson did and that he lived in the Archbishop's private St. Louis home in a bedroom a few doors down from the archbishop.

father-joseph-jiang-1.jpg
via
Father Joseph Jiang.

Jiang was 25 and the girl was fifteen when they first met, according to the suit, which says that the priest got very close to the family and regularly visited their Lincoln County home:

Father Jiang became very affectionate with Plaintiff. He would stroke her hair and hold her. He encouraged her to look "good" for him - like a young woman and not a child. He often bought her expensive gifts - like an expensive Coach purse. Plaintiff lost 25 pounds during this time and was upset about Jiang saying she should look like a woman and not a child. He told her that he was romantic and lonely.

After her parents expressed their concerns, the suit says, Jiang told church leaders, including Carlson, that he needed a reassignment and added that it was "personal."

But eventually he allegedly returned to the family's home, crying, and said, "I'm back."

"He said he could not stay away from the family," the suit says. That night he allegedly kissed the teenage girl and pinned her up against a wall. He returned on multiple occasions and "manipulated her into sexual contact...[using] scripture in order to convince the minor plaintiff that the contact was acceptable." He touched her breasts and genitals, used his hand to direct her hands to his genitals, touched her inappropriately in the parking lot of the church rectory and more, the suit says.

"Defendants Archdiocese and Archbishop knew Father Jiang was dangerous to children before the minor Plaintiff was abused," the suit continues.

When the parents discovered inappropriate e-mails, they confronted Jiang about the "abuse of their daughter and he admitted that it happened," the complaint says. He returned to the home and left a check for $20,000 on their car, texted the girl and said he left the money because of his "stupidity," according to the family. He also left her a voicemail saying he would return to China.

Continue for more on Carlson's alleged involvement and a full copy of the suit.



Sponsor Content

My Voice Nation Help
6 comments
mickslimslide
mickslimslide

The accusations, innocence and so forth about the priest is one issue. What is pointed out in the article is the duplicity of Carlson in attempting to cover up the abuse by concealing evidence. The priest followed Carlson to St. Louis and was living with him: wondering what that is about?  Removing Carlson would be a help as his illegal and immoral actions in cover up send a sign to predators that all they need to do is be under his authority to be protected. 

snapjudy
snapjudy

This brave young girl and her family did the right thing, They turned the $20,000 check from Jiang over to the police, instead of the bishop. It takes a lot of courage to come forward and take action to expose the truth about being sexually abused, And this family is to be commended for doing just that.

Something to keep in mind---- Child predators are very cunning and manipulative. They know every trick on how to groom, threaten, lie, and put the fear of god into their victims, yet they can also be charming and generous, While they are grooming the child, they devote lots of time and energy building trust with them by giving them money and gifts. They tend to make the child feel that they are special and loved.   They appear to do a lot of goods things, they can be very charismatic and you may think they would never harm a child. They have to be this way, in order to not get caught and to continue to abuse Sexual predators are often powerful and well-loved. It would be comforting if those who preyed on the vulnerable were obvious social misfits whose appearance would somehow set off alarm bells and give us the willies or the creeps. They rarely do. Usually, predators are among the last people we would suspect of sexually violating others. At a party, the predator isn't some oddball sitting alone in a corner because others feel uncomfortable with him. Most often, the predator is the guy throwing the party.
It is extremely rare that a child predator has only one victim. Some have many and they need to be kept far away from kids forever. So let's hope that anyone who may have knowledge or may have been harmed by Fr Xiu Hui "Joseph Jiang, will find the courage and strength to speak up and contact police, not the church officials.. no matter how long ago the abuse happened. Keep in mind your silence only hurts, and by speaking up there is a chance for healing, exposing the truth, and therefore protecting others.
Judy Jones, SNAP Midwest Associate Director, USA, 636-433-2511. snapjudy@gmail.com,"SNAP (The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests)

gmerilos
gmerilos

I agree with Chackes. The focus right now should be that Father Jiang is kept away from children and that others with more information are encouraged to come forward. 

michaelsbradleyjr
michaelsbradleyjr

May the heavenly intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary and Saint Joseph her most chaste spouse obtain for all those involved (accused, accuser, the archbishop, judge, jurors, prosecutor, defense attorneys, ...) in the criminal and civil cases surrounding Fr. Joseph Jiang every spiritual good they need that these matters might be resolved in a manner most pleasing to Almighty God.

Fr. Jiang is my friend, and I pray for him daily. From all I know of the case, I have great confidence in his innocence. Even so, I pray and hope for mercy, grace, justice and healing for *all* involved.

Also, I would encourage readers here to remember that even though Fr. Joseph belongs to an of late despised profession ("state of life" would be more accurate) -- the Catholic priesthood -- he has the same rights as any of us and should be presumed innocent until proven guilty in an court of law.

IC XC NIKA

michaelsbradleyjr
michaelsbradleyjr

@gmerilos Fr. Jiang has been suspended from public ministry and required to stay away from minors for about a year now. He has dedicated himself to prayer and to translating the writings of a 19th Century Catholic saint into his native language.

Now Trending

St. Louis Concert Tickets

From the Vault

 

General

Loading...