The Kansas City Star has reported that sexual abuse allegations have been made against a priest at Haskell Indian Nations University’s Catholic Camps Center located at 2301 Barker Ave, Lawrence, KS 66046.
On February 28, 2022, a report was made to the Archdiocese of Kansas City regarding Father Michael Scully. Scully has been accused of sexually assaulting a minor. He was employed at Haskell Indian Nations University’s Catholic Camps Center in Lawrence. However, he also served at St. John the Evangelist Parish, also in Lawrence, and the Holy Family Parish located in Eudora. He has also worked at the Thomas More Prep-Marian and St Joseph’s Catholic Church in Hays.
The archdiocese is concerned there may be additional victims and urge anyone who may have been victimized by Scully to come forward. The priest has been suspended from all priestly ministry duties during the investigation.
Attorney contributor Reed Martens has years of experience representing victims of clergy abuse in the state of Kansas. As a sex abuse attorney, he often represents victims who have been sexually abused by a priest in civil lawsuits. Recently we asked him to share his thoughts regarding the legal options available to these victims.
"Far too often, sexual predators will seek out positions of trust and influence within religious organizations. In addition to their own parish, these predators earn the trust of vulnerable victims in their communities. We see numerous religious leaders being charged with sexually abusing victims of all ages across all religious organizations, including the Catholic Diocese. It is paramount that these organizations fulfill their duty to do all they can to prevent predators from gaining roles such as priests. This could include performing background checks, providing security throughout the property where they are employed, and following up on all reports of misconduct. Failure to implement safety procedures may result in the religious group being held liable for any abuse that occurs."
"A church and its religious officials can be held accountable if they fail to protect their members' safety. Sexual assault and misconduct can sometimes be the result of religious organizations' neglect. One example would be if accusations or complaints were filed against an active clergy member, but religious authorities ignored the charges, and further abuse occurred. In cases of church negligence, the religious institution may be held liable, and victims and their families may be entitled to compensation. Victims can explore their legal options with the help of an experienced sex abuse attorney."