KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The Archdiocese of Kansas City in Kansas spoke out Saturday after the Kansas Bureau of Investigation released a report that foundover 400 victims of child sexual abuse from the Kansas clergy over the course of 50 years.
The investigation, which was launched in 2019, identified 188 members of the Kansas clergy who are suspected of committing aggravated criminal sodomy, rape, aggravated indecent liberties with a child and aggravated sexual battery crimes.
“You cannot read this report without your heart breaking,” said Archbishop Joseph Naumann, leader of the Archdiocese of Kansas City in Kansas.
The statement says that Naumann initially requested an investigation "of archdiocesan files by the attorney general in 2018."
“The Archdiocese has openly collaborated with the KBI from the moment we initiated an extensive and thorough review of our internal files by an independent, outside law firm,” Vicar General Father John Riley said in a written statement. “We shared the full results of our independent review with the KBI and have continued to provide additional information throughout the investigation.”
The response says that in recent years, the diocese of Kansas have created programs to "protect children and vulnerable adults in its parishes and schools" and that there has been a decline in allegations in recent years.
Allegations peaked at 1,367 reports from 1970-74. Allegations dropped to 518 reported instances from 1985-1989 and 101 from 2010 to 2014, according to the KBI's findings.
Anyone who suspects abuse or neglect from the Kansas clergy can report it to the Kansas Protection Report Center at 800-922-5330, and anyone who has been or knows someone abused by a member of the archdiocese should call local law enforcement and the archdiocesan confidential report line at 913-647-305. Abuse can also be reported to the Archdiocese of Kansas City in Kansas online.