Jehovah witness attorneys


Montana law requires officials, including clergy, to report child abuse to state authorities when there is reasonable cause for suspicion. However, the state's high court said in its decision that the Jehovah's Witnesses fall under an exemption to that law in this case. The ruling overturns a verdict awarding compensatory and punitive damages to the woman who was abused as a child in the mids by a member of the Thompson Falls Jehovah's Witness congregation.

Court reverses $35M verdict against Jehovah's Witnesses

The woman had accused the church's national organization of ordering Montana clergy members not to report her abuse to authorities. The Montana case is one of dozens that have been filed nationwide over the past decade saying Jehovah's Witnesses mismanaged or covered up the sexual abuse of children. The attorney for the Jehovah's Witnesses, Joel Taylor, said in a statement that there are no winners in a case involving child abuse.

This is what the Montana Supreme Court has established. The woman's attorney, Jim Molloy, read a prepared statement: "This is an extremely disappointing decision, particularly at this time in our society when religious and other institutions are covering up the sexual abuse of children.

The Montana woman's abuse came after the congregation's elders disciplined the man over allegations of abusing two other family members in the s and early s, the woman's lawsuit said. The elders handled the matter internally, expelling the abuser from the congregation in and then reinstating him the next year, when the abuse of the younger victim continued, according to the lawsuit.

The woman said in her lawsuit that the church shouldn't qualify for the exemption to the state reporting law because Jehovah's Witness officials testified that an elder can choose to report a child abuser to authorities under church practice. Church attorneys said in their appeal that elders handled the allegations internally in accordance with church practices. The Supreme Court declined to look into whether the Jehovah's Witnesses tenets and doctrines are valid, or whether church officials adhered to their own standards in this case, saying in the opinion that it's not within the court's power to do so regarding a religious institution.

View Comments View Comments.The family of a Jehovah's Witness severely injured in a traffic accident has declined to further appeal a Lehigh County Court rulingthat authorized blood transfusions, which the denomination opposes.

Supreme Court, their court of last resort. The deadline for such an appeal has expired, according to Allentown attorney Oldrich Foucek, who represented Lehigh Valley Hospital Center, where the transfusions were administered.

The Witnesses oppose blood transfusions on Scriptural grounds. They carry signed medical alert cards saying they want no transfusions. Lehigh County Judge James Knoll Gardner twice authorized the blood transfusions for the critically ill and unconscious Doron in August - despite being aware of his parents' religious objections. Doron was 22 at the time of the accident.

Judge overturns Jehovah's Witness's Advance Decision not to accept a blood transfusion

They carried the appeal to the Pennsylvania Supreme Court. Doron's life. The Dorons asked the state Supreme Court to reconsider. It refused in a one-sentence decision issued in May. The Dorons then had 90 days to take an appeal to the U. Supreme Court, but chose not to.

Just why remains unclear from the Doron side of the case. Carol Doron said the Watch Tower attorneys asked if it was all right if they didn't appeal. They probably figured they couldn't win. She said she and her husband were glad they went through with the case as far as they did. Doron attorney William Bell III, who operates out of the Witnesses headquarters, was unavailable for comment - as he has been throughout this case. Donald Ridley, a Witnesses attorney also at the Brooklyn headquarters, said Bell represented the family in this instance and that he, Ridley, filed a friend-of-the-court brief for the denomination.

He said it was the choice of the Doron family and Bell not to carry the case any further. Ridley said what was established in this Pennsylvania decision is a narrow issue, though still a matter of principle with the Witnesses.

Foucek said he offered only speculation on why the Witnesses did not appeal.The Catholic Church has held much of the spotlight for its widespread coverup of child molestation. However, any child or adolescent of any faith can be at risk. The lack of background checks for congregants and unsupervised access, combined with the trusting nature of children, puts churchgoing kids of all faiths at particular risk.

Some of the abuses date as far back as While it is difficult to gain access to these sealed files, it is not impossible. Victims can seek compensation for emotional pain and suffering, the cost of mental health counseling, loss of productivity, loss of intimacy, and loss of enjoyment in life. Our consultations are always free and our representation contingency-based, so you only pay for our services if and when we successfully recover compensation on your behalf.

The legal definition of sexual abuse is covered by Texas Penal Code Regardless of whether the person knows the age of the child or not, any inappropriate, predatory behavior is classified as the sexual assault of a minor.

Consent cannot be given in cases where the actor uses force, violence, coercion, threats, weaponry, or intoxicating substances to subdue the victim. Even if no physical contact is made, Texas Penal Code Section Obviously, a sexual abuser can be held liable for hurting a child. However, these individuals may not hospital palam contact number the money to fully compensate the victims for the damage caused.

In most cases, Dallas sexual assault victim lawyers advise victims to include a broader scope of liability in their lawsuit.

This means holding church leaders and the parent companies that insure them accountable for hiring, supervising, and the retention practices that allow child molesters access to children. Section It requires anyone who works with children— including members of church groups— responsible for reporting instances of known or suspected child abuse mental, physical, or emotional to local law enforcement or the Department of Family Protective Services for further investigation.

Simply reporting to a supervisor is insufficient. Unlike most personal injury cases that result in obvious medical bills, the suffering of sexual assault victims is often untallied. What price tag does one place on anxiety, depression, PTSD, nightmares, insomnia, eating disorders, substance abuse problems, memory and focus problems, the inability to be in a normal loving relationship, difficulties in the workplace, or any of the other adverse effects of child sexual abuse?

With a good personal injury lawyer who understands sexual assault law, you can prove your legal right to compensation. Whether you are within the state-mandated deadline to pursue a legal claim is a primary concern in a Texas sexual abuse case. It can be nearly impossible to exonerate oneself after a certain amount of time has passed, at which point memories fade, witnesses die, and evidence is destroyed.

If a filed claim does not fall within the statute of limitations for sexual abuse in Texas, then the judge could summarily dismiss the case outright.Michael Penkava, right, and Colin Scott converse during a hearing in a criminal case alleging the two Jehovah's Witness elders illegally failed to report child abuse Thursday, Dec.

Sullivan Judicial Center in Woodstock. Patrick Kunzer for Shaw Local. A McHenry County judge is set to make a ruling Dec. Defense attorneys for Michael Penkava, 72, and Colin Scott, 88, who face one count each of violating reporting provisions, a Class A misdemeanor, argue the statements were made during a confidential confessional process and are protected by clergy-penitent privilege.

Penkava previously wrote as a freelance columnist for the Northwest Herald. A jury found Hernandez-Pedraza guilty of sexually assaulting and abusing a young female relative for more than 13 years, and he was sentenced in December to 45 years in prison. Prosecutors also are asking that a congregant be allowed to testify at trial. The ruling will be based on hours of testimony from two witnesses called to the stand Thursday afternoon and arguments Friday by defense attorneys for the elders and prosecutors.

He contends that the law requires more specific parameters for activity considered confessional and exempt from Illinois child abuse reporting requirements. Witness John O. Miller speaks about the literature and staff png xss for the Watchtower organization during a hearing for defendants Colin Scott and Michael Penkava Thursday, Dec.

The confessional process continues after the admission and can, especially in the case of an admission of child abuse, lead to the formation of a judicial committee of three elders who advise the sinner and are required to involve his or her spouse at some point, Miller said.

In cases of adultery or child abuse, the spouse of the sinner is given an option to seek divorce, Miller said, and in a child abuse case, the spouse also is given the option to report the allegation to authorities. In states such as Texas, spouses of sinners are told upon their invitation to a judicial committee that an elder made a report of alleged child abuse to law enforcement.

While the spouse is with a judicial committee, they are not confessing to anything, Miller said. The rest of the congregation is informed once the person deemed to have sinned is considered fully repentant, which completes the confessional process, but the details of the sin are not disclosed, Miller said.

Defense attorney Phil Prossnitz examines witness John O. The judge allowed her testimony to proceed but took the step of sealing the courtroom as she was examined by attorneys. January 03,The American Religious Identification Survey conducted in found that about 1.

The church very rarely turns over members of their congregation to law enforcement. Plaintiffs claimed in their lawsuit that they were conditioned and groomed to trust and obey Castellanos. The lawsuit claimed that Castellanos sexually abused other minor children during the same time period and the defendants failed to report him to the police or warn other parents. The lawsuit is currently pending.

Jehovah’s Witnesses at Center of Sex Abuse Scandal Test

Eight children have accused Gonzalo Campos of sexually abusing them between andaccording to a San Diego Union Tribune report. One of those children was Jose lopez, now years-old. When Lopez was about 7 years old inGonzalo Campos was introduced to Jose Lopez as a fatherly figure who could teach him about the Bible.

Lopez told his mother, who immediately confronted church leaders. They told her not to report it to law enforcement and said they would take care of the situation. According to evidence at trial, the church investigated the allegations and monitored Campos for a period of nine months and found him to be repentant.

Were You Sexually Assaulted By Someone In the Jehovah’s Witnesses Church? Our Attorneys Can Help

They did not expel him from the church and he continued to rise throughout the church, becoming an elder in He was kicked out of the church when another victim surfaced inbut was reinstated in In a deposition, he confessed to sexually abusing at least eight children between and Campos is believed to have fled to Mexico around when the case was reported to San Diego Police.

Because the judge ruled that the Watchtower repeatedly ignored her court orders to produce documents in the case and also failed to produce a long serving member of the organization for a deposition.

Johnathan Kendrick, a member of the north Fremont congregation elders, repeatedly molested Candac Conti from towhen she was 9 and 10 years old. Kendrick was convicted in of molesting another girl in Contra Costa County. Call us today for a free and confidential consultation and find out how we can help. We are committed to helping you in any way possible.

If you have been the victim of institutional child molestation, sexual abuse or sexual assault, we are ready to stand by your side and fight for you! Call and start your recovery today. Fremont: Jonathan Kendrick Case Johnathan Kendrick, a member of the north Fremont congregation elders, repeatedly molested Candac Conti from towhen she was 9 and 10 years old.

Take a step toward your recovery today Call us today for a free and confidential consultation and find out how we can help. This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.The scandals child sex abuse in the Catholic Church was big news nearly a decade ago but now an investigation is unearthing evidence of a widespread cover-up of child sexual abuse among Jehovah witnesses.

Key documents involved in this cover-up are right here in San Diego. Trey Bundy is a reporter for Reveal and for the center of investigative reporting. Tray, thank you for joining us.

Jehovah’s Witnesses Sexual Abuse Lawsuit | Get the Right Lawyer

Jehovah's Witnesses parent corporation called the watchtower and is based in New York. Outage or reporting on child abuse within the church lead you to San Diego? With first got wind that Jehovah witnesses had child abuse policies instructing others to cover up, we started by going online and finding a vast committee of X Jehovah witnesses around the world who are focused on this issue and we went source by source looking for lawsuits and one of the lawsuits was right there in San Diego.

How big is the church? There are 1 million members of the Jehovah witnesses around the world. There is 1 million in the United States and they are central to the place is that Armageddon is imminent and will be coming anytime and everyone will be destroyed and only Jehovah witnesses will be resurrected to live in paradise on earth. That basically informs their behavior of the contact and their policies so essentially there was a more insular religions in the world so they do not vote, did not alienware m15 r1 repaste in the military.

They are discouraged from going to college and discouraged from consuming and stream media. Their focuses to bend the church, on the religion, the teachings of God, essentially keeping outsiders at a distance. You learned that there was a rule of congregation leaders found out about child abuse they had to call the watchtower's legal department immediately. Here we have a cup from a San Diego attorney, Irwin Zalkin describing that pick Written, demanded, committed policy very different than the Catholic Church it was unwritten, it was by voice only.

If they did not have it written down anywhere. It was understood. Here it is in writing. As the report there are several levels lawsuits trying to get copies of these documents -- that the watchtower has. One of the hoping to learn and how they obtained any of the documents?

There number of lawsuits against the Jehovah witnesses for child abuse all over the world. Irwin Zalkin has 18 lawsuits currently in the suits are in San Diego.For many years now, the Roman Catholic Church has been in the media spotlight for a long history of alleged occurrences of sexual abuse among the priesthood.

But thanks to some recently filed landmark lawsuits, a much smaller, more tight-lipped religious organization might soon be finding its place in the national hot seat. The sexual abuse lawyers at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC represent child sexual abuse survivors who were harmed by clergy, religious leaders, and lay people in all religious organizations.

If so, contact us today at toll-free phone number to discuss your case evaluation in a confidential setting. We hold those facing sexual abuse allegations and their religious institutions financially and legally accountable. Let us pursue justice through a child sexual abuse lawsuit on your behalf. That culture of silence within the Jehovah's Witness may soon be broken open starting with two separate sexual abuse lawsuits filed by Heather Kitaaba siiraa pdf, 48, and John Michael Ewing, 47, two former members of the sect who claim they were repeatedly molested as children by their elders.

New York recently passed the Child Victims Act, which removes the statute of limitations on abuse lawsuits. Steele and Ewing filed both lawsuits in Brooklyn the day the new law took effect. The stories told by the two plaintiffs are different in scope, but as the New York Post reports, they reveal some common threads.

Ewing claims his abuse began when he was a teenager and continued four to six times per week for the next four years. But in both cases, when the children eventually told their parents, two disturbing things happened:. The parents reported the abuse to the church leadership rather than the police at least at first ; and the church leadership dealt with the situation internally rather than reporting it to the authorities. The elder was convicted of the claims of sexual assault and served a prison sentence before returning to ministry in another congregation.

In Ewing's case, he reported the incident to the church when he was twenty-one years old and suffered the same punishment as his offending elder: Disfellowship from the Jehovah witness religious organization for homosexual activity.

There is evidence that the Watchtower Bible and Tract Societythe nonprofit organization overseeing the Church, has been aware of the ongoing pattern of abuse within its ranks for more than two decades. Congregations with detailed instructions on how to report sexual predators. The instructions were to write a full report answering twelve questions including whether anyone else knew about the abuse and mail the answers to the Watchtower Society while keeping the files confidential.

The Society has allegedly quietly built this information into a secret database that may now contain tens of thousands of reports of abuse within the Jehovah's Witnesses organization, the vast majority of which were never reported to the police—and which has remained mostly under wraps even in defiance of multiple court orders. Much of it has to do with the beliefs of its membership—a common characteristic of cults—that people outside the church are unredeemed and therefore to be distrusted.

But aside from going contrary to the law, if a known predator can be allowed to continue ministry even after serving jail time—and that predator is only one of the thousands known to exist in the church—one must question how much internal accountability is actually taking place.

As a result, parents are frequently completely unaware that they are entrusting their children to the care of alleged predators. Sexual assault is a crime, and abusers can spend many years in prison if they are convicted.

Victims and their families may also have the legal right to file civil lawsuits for financial damages, both against the perpetrator and against any organization including religious organizations that practiced negligence in allowing the abuse to happen. Despite the pattern of secrecy within the millenarian restorationist Christian denomination, congregants who choose to buck the pressure to keep silent and report the abuse have often seen justice served, at least partially.

All that said, Jehovah's witness sex abuse victims still face a couple of challenges when seeking justice or getting compensation. The first challenge may be the conflict within their faith that tells them to distrust the authorities or to keep the discipline within the Jehovah's church itself. Whether filing criminal or civil charges, victims cannot be vindicated or compensated if they do not come forward.

There is a statute of limitations time requirement for bringing sexual abuse claims in civil court to recover compensation for their abuse. Many victims of sexual abuse were children at the time and had no recourse if their parents would not report the abuse. (January 19, – November 21, ) was legal counsel for the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society in the midth century. He argued numerous cases before the United States Supreme Court on behalf of Jehovah's Witnesses in defense of their religious freedoms, winning most of them.

Our Jehovah's Witness sex abuse attorneys at The Zalkin Law Firm handle child sexual abuse cases nationwide, and are available to review your potential case. Our Houston Jehovah witness lawyers at Reich & Binstock can help you do that. Contact us today at or via our online intake form. “MY KNOWLEDGE of Jehovah's Witnesses was very limited,” says Les Civin, an attorney and a director of a law firm in South Africa. Why did he look into the. The Watchtower Society retains a staff of attorneys who often work in behalf of Jehovah's Witnesses parents to gain custody of their children so they can be.

At Andreozzi & Foote, we are committed to providing the support and legal assistance you need if you have been a victim of Jehovah's Witness. The sexual abuse attorneys at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC is experienced with prosecuting claims and lawsuits involving Jehovah's. If you or a loved one was.

Where were you hurt?

Jehovah's Witness Sex Abuse Lawyers is a joint venture between Gomez Trial Attorneys and Atkins and Markoff. We have successfully represented sexual assault. Most nominal Christian denominations ignore it Jehovah's Witnesses do not.

God first gave his law regarding blood to Noah and his. Continue Reading. Finding the right lawyer for a Jehovah's Witness Sexual Abuse Lawsuits can feel like an overwhelming process.

The Feeney Law Firm Is here to help you. Slater and Gordon Lawyers has extensive experience of supporting those who've suffered from abuse. Our service is guaranteed to be confidential, and our. The Pennsylvania attorney general's office is reportedly investigating if the Jehovah's Witnesses failed to report child sexual abuse to. Jehovah's Witness child sex abuse attorneys. Dallas, Plano, Frisco.

Was your child abused by clergy? You may be entitled to compensation. Buffalo Jehovah's Witnesses Sex Abuse Lawyers. Jed Dietrich, Esq., is Recognized as a Top 3 Personal Injury Lawyer in Buffalo, New York, and is Dedicated to. Muhammad Ali (Cassius Clay), left, laughs along with his attorney Hayden Covington in Covington argued for religious freedom for Jehovah's Witnesses. Our Attorneys Can Help. Recently, allegations have surfaced accusing Jehovah's Witnesses of covering up years of sexual abuse accusations within their.

Attorney Hayden Covington (front, center) represented the Jehovah's Witnesses in dozens of court cases in the midth century and won many of them. Lawyers representing victims of Jehovah's Witness sexual abuse. Lawsuits happening against Jehovah's Witness - Finding EXPERIENCED attorneys to fight for.

The Jehovah's Witnesses will move to join the national redress scheme for abuse survivors, whose lawyers are disappointed it has taken so.

During my 25 years of practice as a family law attorney, I have represented several clients who are religious minorities.