Wednesday, March 16, 2011


In 2002, The Boston Globe broke the story of Catholic priests who had been abusing children.  When their bishops found out about the crimes, they moved the priests to new parishes (allowing the abuse to continue) rather than report the crimes.  It was an enormous scandal, and the Globe deserves credit for their reporting.

Ultimately, several priests were convicted.  In the end, at least some of the predators paid the price.

So what happens when the abusers work for the government?
Nearly 40 years after New York emptied its scandal-ridden warehouses for the developmentally disabled, the far-flung network of small group homes that replaced them operates with scant oversight and few consequences for employees who abuse the vulnerable population.

A New York Times investigation over the past year has found widespread problems in the more than 2,000 state-run homes. In hundreds of cases reviewed by The Times, employees who sexually abused, beat or taunted residents were rarely fired, even after repeated offenses, and in many cases, were simply transferred to other group homes run by the state.
The police wouldn't investigate, and when finally forced to, botched the case.  A perpetrator walked, even with DNA evidence to establish his guilt.
At a home upstate in Hudson Falls, two days before Christmas in 2006, an employee discovered her supervisor, Ricky W. Sousie, in the bedroom of a severely disabled, 54-year-old woman. Mr. Sousie, a stocky man with wispy hair, was standing between the woman’s legs. His pants were around his ankles, his hand was on her knee and her diaper was pulled down.

The police were called, and semen was found on the victim. But the state did not seek to discipline Mr. Sousie. Instead, it transferred him to work at another home.
I would like to think that there's a special place in Hell for someone who would rape a mentally handicapped person in their care.

But punishing these animals is difficult, it seems, because they work for the government and are protected by the union.  The Organs of the State do not self-correct.  Unlike with the Catholic church, individuals and institutions escape the consequences of their actions.

I'm sure it will be different with Obamacare, though.


UPDATE 16 March 2011 12:45: The Six has a post up about how to protect your loved ones from this sort of thing.

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