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Is it a crime for priests to have sex with kids? This Archbishop isn't sure

In an alarming video released yesterday by Jeff Anderson & Associates, Archbishop Robert Carlson, gave a sworn testimony stating that he was not sure whether or not he knew it was a crime for an adult to engage in sex with a kid.

Archbishop Robert Carlson

Attorneys Jeff Anderson and Mike Finnegan hosted a press conference in Minnesota yesterday, where they released videos of the sworn testimony by Archbishop Carlson. The videos were recorded on May 23, 2014 as part of a civil lawsuit in Minnesota.

“I’m not sure whether I knew it was a crime or not,” Carlson replied when asked if he knew it was a crime for an adult to engage in sex with a kid. “I understand today it’s a crime.”

Carlson was involved in handling sexual abuse cases in Minnesota for 15 years, and during the taped deposition, Carlson was asked various questions about his knowledge of the sexual abuse perpetrated by priests during that time. Throughout his testimony, Carlson claimed 193 times that he didn’t know the answers to the questions posed by Anderson. Carlson’s forgetfulness is shown in the video clip attached to this article.

“When did you first discern that it was a crime for an adult to engage in sex with a kid?” Anderson asked.

“I don’t remember,” Carlson replies.

“When did you first discern it was a crime for a priest to engage in sex with a kid who he had under his control?”

“I don’t remember that either.”

“Do you have any doubt in your mind that you knew that in the 70’s?”

“I don’t remember if I did or didn’t.”

“In 1984, you are an Auxiliary Bishop in the Archdiocese of St. Paul in Minneapolis. You knew it was a crime then, right?”

“I’m not sure if I did or didn’t.”

“It is disturbing,” Anderson said when speaking about the testimony, “because what he does remember is that he didn’t report to the police, that he never turned anything over to law enforcement, and that he never did anything effectively to remove offenders from ministry to protect the kids.”

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