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Former Cardinal Theodore McCarrick charged with sexual assault of teenager

The alleged victim's attorney says McCarrick is the first cardinal in the United States ever to be criminally charged with a sexual crime against a minor

Updated: July 29, 2021 - 12:50pm

Former Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, who was stripped of his position within the Catholic Church and defrocked following a Vatican investigation that confirmed he had molested children and adults, has been charged with the sexual assault of a teenage boy during a wedding reception in the 1970s.

Court documents reportedly detail that McCarrick has been charged with three counts of indecent assault and battery on an individual over 14. 

The attorney representing the man alleging the abuse says McCarrick is the first cardinal in the United States ever to be criminally charged with a sexual crime against a minor. 

"It takes an enormous amount of courage for a sexual abuse victim to report having been sexually abused to investigators and proceed through the criminal process. Let the facts be presented, the law applied, and a fair verdict rendered," wrote the attorney, Mitchell Garabedian, who has represented many church abuse victims over the years. 

A court report alleges that McCarrick was a friend of the family of the man who was groped, that the former Cardinal had begun abusing him when he was a boy, and that the incident in question occurred in 1974 on the Wellesley College campus, where the man's brother's wedding reception was taking place.

McCarrick, now 91 and living in Missouri, was defrocked by Pope Francis following a lengthy Vatican investigation that confirmed that he was a sexual predator, something which had been rumored to be the case for decades. 

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