Sunday, January 3, 2016

The Twisted Legal Logic Of "Mariana"

Careful, Mariana might be watching
By Ralph Cipriano

If "Mariana" ever chaperoned an eighth grade dance, many junior high boys might leave in handcuffs.

Going by the legal logic expressed on this blog by "Mariana" -- who may or may not be former Assistant District Attorney Mariana Sorensen -- any guy in pants who presses his penis against another clothed person may be guilty of rape. That's the stated opinion of a commenter on this blog who identified herself only as "Mariana." A commenter who, in a question directed by me to former ADA Sorensen, may have divulged the legal logic behind that fatally flawed 2011 grand jury report that Sorensen wrote.

Regular readers of the blog may recall that I occasionally mention that 2011 grand jury report and how it contained more than 20 factual errors. After three years of hearing about that, "Mariana" apparently got pissed enough to spill the legal beans in the commentary section on this blog.

For three years, Sorensen's old boss, District Attorney Seth Williams, has relentlessly stonewalled all of my questions about that flawed 2011 grand jury report, still proudly posted on his website. Williams may be reckless enough to misstate facts at press conferences when he knows the rest of the media won't hold him accountable. But he's not dumb enough to be drawn into a battle he can't win, namely any discussion about the mistakes in that 2011 grand jury report.

But, thanks to "Mariana," we may now have some insight into the twisted legal logic behind that 2011 grand jury report. 

Here's how the commentary went down between myself and "Mariana." It began under a story I posted about our grandstanding D.A. making erroneous statements at a press conference where he announced he would do everything in his power to keep Msgr. William J. Lynn in jail.

Lynn is the trophy head Williams bagged in the Billy Doe prosecution. An anonymous commentator who was ripping prosecutors in general then wrote that he was "in possession of grand jury testimony [where] prosecutors invented facts."

That prompted "Mariana" to ask who gave the anonymous commentator the grand jury testimony not introduced at trial. "Sounds as if there should be another investigation,""Mariana" concluded.

I jumped in and asked, "Is this Mariana Sorensen? If it is, maybe you can explain all those errors in  the 2011  grand jury report." That prompted "Mariana" to unload. I broke up what she wrote into paragraphs so that readers could draw a few breaths while going through her legal diatribe:

Ralph -- I have nothing to explain to you. Except that I can't even begin to quantify your "errors." Especially counting, as you do, every repetition of a single purported mistake. Your original article claiming 20 errors in the grand jury report is completely bogus. So every time you've quoted or referenced your own dishonest work would constitute another error (lie??). Given how often you like to do that, I would estimate that your untruths are approaching triple digits. 

I'm not going to go through all your misrepresentations of the facts, but given that you count the use of the words rape and sodomy with respect to Fr. Brennan's crimes as 11 discreet errors (because, according to you, it is impossible to commit a rape if the victim is wearing underwear), I suggest that you consult your blog's sponsor on the law. Last time I researched the topic, there was no ruling by Pennsylvania courts, but several other states and federal courts that have considered the question have held that rape and sodomy can be proved beyond a reasonable doubt even when the victim is wearing underwear or other clothing.

The necessary “penetration no matter how slight” can be accomplished through or around the clothing. See, for example, Davis v. Commonwealth of Virginia, 643 S.E. 2d 322 (Va. 2006)(penetration found through “regular issue . . .polyester pants . . .and undergarments as well), citing United States v. Norman, 139 F.3d1099, 1103 (10th Cir. 1997)

(“Unquestionably, some penetration could occur through pliable clothing. . . . Existence of such material does not ... protect defendants from prosecution under the statute [object sexual penetration of a child].”); Nguyen v. Cate, 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 33561, 33 (U.S. District Ct. N. Cal. 2012) (Where the victim described contact “in the middle …[of her] butt,” ”“the jury could find sufficient evidence of sodomy even if they believed that the contact occurred outside Sandy’s clothing.”); People v. Ribera, 34 Cal. Rptr. 3d 538 (Ct. of App. Of Cal., 5th App. Dis. 2005)(evidence was sufficient to prove sodomy where victim testified that defendant “poked” his penis into her behind, even though victim was wearing underwear). 

See also, Chrobak v. State of Arkansas, 58 S.W. 3d 387 (evidence was sufficient to prove rape where defendant penetrated by moving the victim’s underwear and pajamas to the side); Cummings v. Burge, 581 F. Supp. 2d 436 (W.D.N.Y. 2008)(rape accomplished by pushing underwear aside).

Now, I have a question for you. Who gave you copies of grand jury testimony that was not ever made part of the public record?

Here's what "Mariana" and I were referring to. Eleven times in the 2011 grand jury report, the district attorney stated that in 1996 Father James J. Brennan raped 14-year-old Mark Bukowski during an overnight stay at the priest's house, a visit requested by Bukowski's mother. The subject is actually of current interest as the DA has announced plans to retry the case Oct. 24th, more than four years after a jury deadlocked on the original charges against Father Brennan.

Now we can all agree a priest should never have been in bed with a 14-year-old under any circumstances, nor should he have ever touched the boy in any inappropriate way, as the allegations claim in the Father Brennan case. Again, we have to remember that the accused is innocent until proven guilty, which didn't happen in the first trial. My sole aim in discussing this again is to show the intellectual dishonesty of the district attorney's office.

This excerpt is from pages 11 and 12 of the grand jury report:

Father Brennan, who was now shirtless, insisted that Mark remove his gym shorts and climb into bed with him in only his underwear, which Mark did. Mark attempted to sleep on his side, with his back to Father Brennan, because he was afraid to look at the priest. As Mark lay in that position, Father Brennan hugged him from behind, resting his chin on Mark’s shoulder and pulling the boy closer to him.

When Father Brennan pulled Mark toward him, Mark felt Father Brennan’s erect penis enter his buttocks. Mark began to cry, and asked himself over and over again, “Why is this happening?” as Father Brennan anally raped him. Mark fell asleep that night with Father Brennan’s penis still in his buttocks.

In Mariana's legal citations she jumped between what might be described as spooning and what might be described as rape; penetration of the buttocks as opposed to penetration of the anus.

But the grand jury report unequivocally stated that "Father Brennan anally raped" Bukowski.

When he testified before the grand jury on Oct. 8, 2010, Mark Bukowski said:

I got into bed with him [Father Brennan] and he was now shirtless and insisted not in a violent or threatening way that I should remove my gym shorts. So I did, got into the bed and immediately took the position of having my back to him because I didn't want to look at him ...

He began to hug me from behind and rest his chin on my shoulder with his beard scratching my upper neck area. He continually pulled me closer, while moving closer himself with his arms around my upper chest. This time I felt his erect penis between my butt cheeks. My boxers were still on, however, I do not know if he had shorts on. With the way it felt and how aggressive, yet gentle he was, it was if he wanted to pull himself through me and for me to come out the back of him. I remember lastly thinking what the fuck happened tonight and crying myself to sleep with his penis still between my butt cheeks, saying to myself over and over again, why is this happening?

 In the grand jury report, Bukowski described a spooning, a penetration of his buttocks, and not an anal rape.

When Father Brennan was tried as a co-defendant with Msgr. Lynn, on the witness stand, Mark Bukowski testified that both he and the priest had t-shirts and boxer shorts on the night they spent in the priest's bed. 

In her legal logic, "Mariana" cited incidents where apparently the attacker pushed aside the victim's underwear on his way to achieving penetration of either the buttocks or the anus. 

"Mariana" can argue all the legal technicalities in rape law until all of our eyes glaze over and we all forget, forgive me, the bottom line of the case. Here's where the brilliant legal argument espoused by "Mariana" turns out to be, in her words, "completely bogus."

The grand jury report called for indicting Father Brennan and charging him with rape and involuntary deviant sexual intercourse with a minor. But when the actual trial began, the rape charge against Father Brennan was reduced to attempted rape, with no official explanation ever from D.A. Williams, ADA Sorensen, or anybody else.

Sorry, "Mariana," but in the real world, namely the court of law, you lost big time. Not even D.A. Williams, who would do just about anything to put a priest in jail, was willing to go to war with your novel definition of what constitutes anal rape.

Is "Mariana" really ADA Mariana Sorensen? We have one more clue.

After "Mariana" and I got through exchanging pleasantries, Dennis Ecker weighed in. Most of the regular readers of this blog will recall Ecker as a tireless [some would say mindless] victims' advocate who claims himself to be a victim of sex abuse.

Ecker told "Mariana" if Ralph and others believe she is really Mariana Sorensen, he knows her to be the "greatest kindest woman God placed on this earth. A woman I define as a hero." If "Mariana" isn't Mariana Sorensen, then "Mariana" "should be honored to be mistaken for her," Ecker wrote. 

A no-doubt blushing "Mariana" then replied, "Dennis, you are the hero." "Mariana" went on to praise Dennis for remaining "civil, kind and open-minded in the midst of all of the mean-spirited and ignorant comments about abuse survivors on this blog."

Sorry, Mariana, we were probably not talking about real abuse survivors, we were talking about Billy Doe.

Now Mariana, you state you don't want to go into all my other "misrepresentations of the facts" that I mentioned in my original post. Why the hell not? Let's go point by point. I've got the grand jury transcripts and other evidence gathered by the D.A.'s own detectives to back up what I'm saying, that you twisted the official record to fit your story line in the grand jury report.

You know, the grand jury testimony where Billy Doe's mother said that her son underwent a dramatic personality change in high school. That didn't fit your story line so you rewrote it to say that the dramatic personality change occurred in grade school, when Billy was supposedly raped by two priests and a school teacher.

Your real problem is that you never thought any of that secret stuff would ever come out in the media. And as far as who gave me those grand jury transcripts, wouldn't you like to know?

We have a shield law in Pennsylvania that protects a reporter from having to reveal his sources. Suffice to say it may have been someone concerned about the misdeeds of unaccountable prosecutors like yourself. You know, people who work under cover of secrecy, and can do anything they want. Like twisting a savage spooning into a rape.

Some zealot drunk on what Daily News columnist Christine Flowers, herself a lawyer, recently described in the Msgr. Lynn case as "prosecutorial lust."

Brace yourself, "Mariana," the whole house of cards may be collapsing.

Someday, you may be hauled into a courtroom, or before some legal ethics board. And you may have to state who you really are. And explain your blatant dishonesty, all in the name of an end result that in your mind was justified by any means necessary. 


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. To dedicate an entire blog to try and attack one woman being Mariana Sorenson or not only goes to show how desperate one person can be to justify putting lies to paper and a failure to answer many questions raised on a previous blog by someone who goes by Anonymous. Although, it could be a desperate attempt at revenge against Miss Sorenson for putting a school teacher/child rapist behind bars who has recently lost an appeal to the state Supreme Court, a rapist who Ralph attempted to defend who will now spend many more years in prison until his next appeal. MAYBE SHERO'S DEFENSE ATTORNEY SHOULD HAVE RAISED THE POINT OF THOSE 20 FACTUAL ERRORS you claim.

    Then to read on I take notice for some reason only Ralph would know, him mentioning little old me in his blog for putting a lady on a pedestal where she rightfully belongs. A woman who is a hero not only to me but others.

    If you ask me this is a last effort by Ralph to play journalist as his ship is taking on water and the hole he has managed to make for himself dating back many years is to large to fix.

    p.s. Miss Sorenson if you still have my number give me a call sure would like to hear from you. We can have a good laugh together.

  3. Mariana - now that you've surfaced, just two direct questions for you:

    - If you were so proud of the 'integrity' of the second Grand Jury Report, then why did you resign your ADA position shortly after Ralph posted his expose??

    - Did Seth view you as a legal liability and jettison you?

  4. Since we are asking questions

    1)Ralph are you protected by the Pennsylvania Shield law ?

    2)Have you been accused of harassment and intimidation involving Billy Doe ?

    3)Have you be accused of publishing Billy Doe's real name, e-mail address, and photographs in an attempt to harass or intimidate Billy Doe ?

    4)Have you been accused of attempting to taint the jury pool in the case involving Billy Doe ?

    5)While employed by the Beasley firm did you work for or on the behalf of Billy Doe ?

    6)While employed by the Beasley firm was it also your job to provide summary accounts of the trial not on behalf of the defendants Lynn, Engelhardt or Shero. ?

    1. Wow. I'd be interested in the answer to those questions.

    2. Mariana, we ALL would be interested in knowing why Seth asked you to leave. Did your authoring of the intellectually dishonest' Grand Jury Report have anything to do with it??

    3. Dear Anonymous at 3:38 p.m.

      I was also accused of masterminding the Kennedy assassination.

    4. Funny Ralph. Maybe the person asking the questions knows one does not have to be Hemingway as long as you have written documentation.

    5. That sounds like a yes from Ralph to Anonymous 3:38 pm's questions. But why, Ralph, do you suspect Slade (Billy Doe's lawyer??) of accusing you of helping Billy's team?

      As to Anonymous 6:43 pm, I'm afraid the truth would disappoint you. You're probably happier believing the conspiracy theories found on this blog -- like the ones that have me enjoying a hefty share of Billy Doe's settlement while hanging out at SNAP headquarters.

    6. So, Mariana, once again you're showing your prosecutorial mindset. All you need is a set of accusations, as in my alleged case of misconduct, and you pronounce the suspect guilty. Sounds exactly like what you did in the case of Billy Doe and Mark Bukowski.

    7. Tell you what, Mariana. You answer my questions about your office's intellectual dishonesty and rewrites of the grand jury report and I'll answer those questions about allegations of journalistic "misconduct."

    8. Sorry. It's not my place to explain office decisions or grand jury findings. And I don't really care about your ethics. But your readers might be interested to know if you've secretly been working for Billy Doe's side.

    9. Typical dodge. You could explain that grand jury report, which other people in your office claim that you wrote. But instead you continue to hide behind some professional veneer available only to prosecutors. You and your old boss sound like you think you're infallible as the Catholic Church used to be.

    10. To be accused of Journalistic misconduct don't you first have to be defined as a journalist in Pennsylvania. I refer you sir to 42PA.C.S 5942(a)where it states criteria one must meet to be protected under the Shield Law for journalists. YOU MEET NONE OF THOSE. Run of the mill blogger or at the very best a publicist for a law firm. I like to think of you as a glorified secretary.

      You call yourself what you want if that makes you happy.

      However, I do believe it is your turn to answer some questions since Miss Sorenson has answered one of yours, and looking over those questions I believe they are a example of your character. So answer the questions and set the record straight or continue to take the 5th and the few people who continue to read this blog can make their own assumptions.

    11. I wonder if the Beasley firm knew Ralph was burning the candle at both ends ? Where I come from they call that being two faced.

      Solution: Miss Sorenson should pay a visit to the Beasley firm and tell them she would like to take over the blog. How could they go wrong by having an actual soldier who fought the war and who is an actual attorney.I can see it now Mariana Sorenson journalist.(if Ralph can call himself a journalist why can't she ?)

      Prerequisites: Must have no morals, not be able to see the truth when its in front of your face,biased,non objective, have a agenda and a cold heart.

      Pros of the job - The ability to call herself a journalist and her very own PRES credentials. Not a misprint. If the job does not workout she can run for president.

    12. Happily Miss Sorenson you would never get the job you do not meet the prerequisites for the job. Beasley firm is happy with the person they got he meets everyone.

    13. Mariana - In the beginning Ralph was pro-abuse victims (pro-Gallagher). The trial blogs are on this site to back it up. It was only after the events started to happen in your courtroom did things shift to the other side. Is it a coincidence you are no longer a judge? I think not. And for you Dennis, well you never set foot inside one of the courtrooms so your posts carry little weight around hear anyway. Now you and Mariana may talk, email or do whatever you two do and guess what is all one-sided hearsay from your keyboard. What has been done on this site is unbiased reporting.

    14. Since you probably won't believe me I say have Ralph read your comment and if truthful he will set you straight.

    15. I was served with a subpoena during the Billy Doe case by Billy's lawyers. They alleged that I wasn't a reporter under the Shield law, and all kinds of other accusations.

      Anybody who goes on the court docket can see that I was represented by Will Spade, like Mariana, a former ADA who investigated the archdiocese. He replied in a lengthy brief that I certainly was a journalist covered by the Shield Law.

      At a joint telephone conference, Billy's lawyers were told by the judge that their subpoena and motion to get me to divulge my sources wasn't going anywhere. That was the end of the matter.

      I have never been a regular employee of the Beasley Firm, although I was hired to write a biography about James E. Beasley Sr., a book that goes into my own lengthy battle with the archdiocese, for covering them too aggressively. I am a freelancer who works for other publications that include Newsweek and National Catholic Reporter. I am a former Philadelphia Inquirer and LA Times reporter who's been a journalist for nearly 40 years.

      I did do some trial summaries for Billy's lawyers early in the case. Nothing was hidden from anybody. At the time, I actually believed Billy's story, like every else in the press corps. Then I heard him testify.

      One of Billy's lawyers asked me what I thought. I replied that I didn't believe an f--- thing he said. It was just a gut reaction from somebody who hears stories all the time and has to decide on the spot whether the story teller is telling the truth or not.

      Then I dug into the evidence and saw not only did Billy tell a fantastic story with endless contradictions, but also that all of the evidence gathered by the DA's own detectives contradicted him. I concluded that he was probably lying and quite possibly made the whole thing up.

      It's an opinion shared by several people in the DA's office, and many veteran lawyers in the case. Attacking my credibility is an attempt to bolster Billy's, or give him some cover and he beats a hasty retreat from the civil case, no doubt enriched by the archdiocese's unwise settlement.

  5. Not sure how all of this changes the simple point I was making, which was: many courts (in fact, all the ones I found that discussed this factual scenario) have held that juries can convict for sodomy and rape, even if a victim is wearing underwear throughout the assault. As I recall, you have said (numerous times, but based on no authority save your own) that rape in such circumstances is an impossibility.

    In my opinion, a jury could reasonably find that a priest who aggressively, yet gently, pushes his erect penis between the butt cheeks of a 14-year-old boy who is crying in bed is guilty of anal rape or attempted anal rape, despite the boxer shorts. Especially following a night of showing the boy porn, discussing penis size, and offering to help the boy get an erection.

    Thanks for the offer, but I am not going to go point by point with you. Clearly inconvenient facts and law are irrelevant to you and your followers. Anyone who wants to know the truth, can figure it out from the public record. Two juries and a grand jury all did.

    As for what is not in the public record, I cannot comment on it. Except to say that Lynn's, Engelhardt's, Shero's, and Brennan's able lawyers had all of the evidence presented to the grand jury. The DA's office gave it to them (so much for your theory that I thought it would never "get out.") As for discovery that did not make it to the public record -- the defense lawyers either chose not to introduce it, or actively fought against its introduction (haven't seen you write about any of the material that does not fit your story line).

    Obviously, you are sticking to your story. It was silly of me to think that anything -- even the opinion of several appellate courts (or twisted legal logic, as you would call it) -- could make a difference.

    1. Mariana, you really have a problem answering a simple question. If you were so right, why did the rape charge get downgraded to attempted rape?

      Why did you change Billy Doe's mother's testimony to say her son underwent a dramatic personality change in grade school when she told the grand jury high school?


      You are hiding and everyone can see it.

    2. Ralph - trying to get a straight answer from Sorensen is like pissing up a rope - it can't be done.

  6. Mariana's comment at 12:55 states it was removed by Ralph. Only to be seen again at 3:39. I only hope it was a mistake by Ralph and he re-posted it and he will respect and continue to post ALL comments.

    1. I did that Dennis. Just fixing some typos. I sent you an email. Hope I have your correct address.

    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

    3. Thanks Mariana. My apology to Ralph.

  7. Well, shouldn't he have gone to jail anyway for the savage spooning, whatever the hell that is? Sounds worse than rape. And are you saying that 11 of your 20 mistakes have to do with boxer shorts preventing penetration which they absolutely do not?

    This is a super strange column. In what way is the whole house of cards collapsing? Are you saying that every court at every level is following twisted legal logic? Except the one 3-judge panel that may have to reconsider its opinion or probably get overruled by the Supreme Court?

    I cannot believe you went into such detail discussing two ways of raping a child as if one would have been okay. This is becoming delusional. The fact that he was showing the boy porn and then gets him in bed and starts pressing his penis against the boy as the boy cried is cause for a prison sentence without knowing the rest of what happened.

    And why did you have to bring Dennis Ecker into it? I thought your column was turning into a comedy at that point. Actually, this was an entertaining column now that I take another look at it, and I do appreciate the comic relief in such a grim and sickening series of criminal cases.

    1. I didn't say rape of a child was ok, what I was pointing out was that facts on the record were distorted to tell a different story. That should matter to everybody. The DA had an obligation to get the facts straight whatever they were, not make up new facts.

    2. SarahTX

      Believe me I was shocked to see Ralph comment. I know Ralph tried to e-mail me the other day maybe he is upset I never opened it up.

      His comment was though a chuckle my wife and I shared and a chuckle I shared with Miss Sorenson while we spoke about the lies of Cipriano amid the crimes of 4 priests and a school teacher. The same crimes you speak of such as the "savage spooning" inflicted onto a child who was in tears and whose body was frozen fearing what would happen next.

      Indeed Ralph's comments are comical and I take this one as a compliment since he thinks I still have the ability to make a woman blush.

    3. Ralph, so what? Do you think the child at the time was actually analyzing whether the monster behind him was penetrating his butt cheeks or anally raping him or spooning him or whatever else you're contemplating? Do you think a child paralyzed with fright is even thinking in terms of butt cheeks and anal rape?

      There's no way anyone could get these facts straight, particularly the child being viciously attacked. What is known is that this madman showed the child porn, got the child in bed, caused the child to have an erection, and then proceeded to do filthy things to the child in order to achieve sexual gratification. That man goes to prison whether or not the child is able to give an exact play-by-play as to where this freak's penis was at every moment during the attack. The DA has no way of getting these facts straight. And neither do you.

    4. I refer you to the original story:

      I did something simple here. I compared what the grand jury report said to what the grand jury transcripts said, as well as other evidence in the case gathered by the DA's own detectives.

      I found glaring inaccuracies and brazen rewrites of the evidence. That's not how the game is supposed to be played. When I asked "Mariana" why she didn't give one straight answer. Her boss did nothing but stonewall. Now the anonymous critics on this blog are using anything they can dredge up to attack my credibility.

      Attacking the messenger is the oldest ploy in the book. The questions remain unanswered after three years. That speaks volumes.

  8. Mariana.....Kathleen Kane from Harrisburg has been releasing some embarrassing and possibly incriminating e-mails - - - - - bit-by bit......drip....drip....drip! She even got a Supreme Court 'Justice' (Eaken) suspended.

    Could she or her people have already set their sights on the Phila DA's office.

  9. Ralph, you've done an excellent job - as usual - and are to be commended. As I said before, you struck a nerve with this depth charge as it caused 'Stonewall' Sorensen to surface.

    Keep it up and perhaps Rufus himself may 'grace' us with his on-line presence.


    Ralph,is it true when you became aware and had knowledge Billy Doe had passed his polygraph test you failed to report those findings on by being quoted as saying "I've been trying to cover it up."

  11. What horseshit. Billy testified that he never took a polygraph. Why would his lawyers polygraph him when they know what the results would be?

    The desperation of the Billy lobby is telling. Sorry boys, there are a few more bombs headed your way.

  12. I refer you to The Legal Intelligencer

    Dated November 10, 2015

    "According to Lauricella and McLaughlin, the civil case got a bit of a head start by using some of the work done during the criminal case."

    "However, the diocese also turned over some 17,000 pages of documents for review,and about 45 depositions, including bishops and cardinals were taken in the case. McLaughlin also noted that in the lead-up to the trial date, HIS CLIENT HAD TAKEN A POLYGRAPH TEST ABOUT THE ALLEGATIONS, WHICH DOE "PASSED WITH FLYING COLORS,"MCLAUGHLIN SAID.

    So do you want to stick with that story Billy Does attorney's did not have him tested ?

    Anything else you want to challenge me with ?

    1. Plenty. At his deposition, Billy stated he was never polygraphed. When I printed that Engelhardt and Avery had passed a polygraph I saw the letters their polygraphers sent their lawyers with the test results. If Billy's lawyers want to send me the results of his polygraph I'll be happy to print it. But I do suspect somebody isn't telling the truth. Also, I find it suspicious that the lawyers in the case agree to some kind of confidentiality agreement and then Billy's lawyers give a self-serving interview in the Legal designed to turn an embarrassing situation [pulling the plug on the trial the night before jury selection] into an opportunity to declare victory.

  13. Ralph, Is it also true you failed to be truthful with your readers by failing to inform them prior to the settlement with Billy Doe the Archdiocese of Philadelphia also settled with three other victims of clergy abuse only months earlier ?

    1. Before you claim something else is "horseshit" I direct you to another one of your blogs dated November 6, 2015. Titled "Billy Doe Punks Out. If you review the comment by Dennis Ecker on November 9, 2015 @ 6:06 he states "you don't see Ralph mention it here but the Archdiocese of Philadelphia before making settlement with Billy Doe settled with three other victims of sexual abuse again acknowledging their guilt, and again keeping parishioners in the dark."

      Then we see on November 13,2015 @ 9:54 a comment from you making that statement again "I've been trying to cover it up".

    2. My horse crap quote relates to Billy Doe passing a polygraph test with flying colors. Keep trying diligently to discredit me. Meanwhile, give the DA and Billy a pass and don't mind if the DA or Sorensen don't answer any legitimate questions.

  14. Ralph, just saying, are 11 of your 20 Grand Jury mistakes based on whether boxer shorts prevent penetration. Just saying. No, they don't.

  15. When Lynne Abraham was DA, I actually was on friendly terms with that office. They used to pass out as a summary of the 2005 grand jury report my story in the National Catholic Reporter detailing the case against former archbishops Bevilacqua and Krol.

    When the DA was investigating the archdiocese, I was asked to come in and share what little I knew about the archdiocese's finances. Mariana herself used to call me occasionally with questions.

    Then, it all changed. It seems pretty obvious why.

  16. In reference to this Blog. I sat in the Lynn trial several times and all I can say is that when I would read other articles I would think "Gee was I at the same trial". I started to read Ralph blog and decided he was the only one reporter giving the true facts about the trial and all that happened that day Good or Bad. So I must say Ralph is truly in my eyes a True Honest Reporter.

  17. I know why it is so called here in Philadelphia it is hell freezing over as Ralph Cipriano after being pushed is now answering questions asked of him.

    We can all make our assumptions if Ralph is a bona-fide journalist or not by reading the Pennsylvania statute or not or by reading other documentation that proves Ralph does not know what he is talking about bringing into question of his credibility.

    I would still like to read his truthful answers to questions 2,3, and 4, because I would like to direct a question solely to Ralph. How would you feel if I passed your home address and other personal information that I obtained legally about you onto organizations such as SNAP or others with the sole person to harass.


    1. I'm sorry SarahTX I am guilty of not proofreading until after I hit publish. My first sentence was meant to read "I know why it is so COLD.

    2. Nobody pushed me. Unlike Mariana, I really don't have anything to hide. I have never published in my stories Billy Doe's real name or email or address. We have run some photos of him that he posted on Facebook that were passed along by some of his followers.

      You are attempting character assassination behind the cloak of anonymity. Pretty easy to do. Why don't you come out of hiding and tell us who you are and what your particular self-interest is here? Critics on this blog tend to fall into two categories: people involved in the case who have something to gain and the victims' lobby. Some, like Dennis, are brave enough to put their name behind what they're saying. No matter what they say they do get points for honesty. What's your story?

  18. Has anybody heard anything about the Brennan re-trial ? I believe it was to begin on the 4th.

  19. I believe the new date is set for October 24th. My question is eventually can the defense make an argument that Brennan's sixth amendment rights are being violated ? Does the right to a speedy trial even apply to re-trials ? I would like to see this guy and his "savage spooning" (a term used by Brennan's own defense attorney to describe his clients actions)thrown into a deep dark hole.But witnesses forget, witnesses die. I don't want Ralph and his little band of followers be able to make excuses why a guilty verdict was rendered. This guy admitted to supplying Mark with beer, gave a child access to pornography because Brennan gave the excuse he was having a temper tantrum, and jumped in bed with him. At the very least this guy should go away for contributing to the delinquency of a minor. We can only hope a new jury can see this is a bad guy someone who they would not want to be around or possibly live next to.

  20. Dennis doesn't want to miss it; he can't wait for the next time anywhere in the country a priest might be thrown in jail. He never goes to the courtroom, he doesn't have to know anybody. He knows the victim is always right and the accused is always wrong.

  21. Oh dear Lord here we go. This is a guy who is busting on me because I want to see a guy go to jail on FACTS we already know. But Cipriano is calling Mark a liar with no facts. Is that because Ralph Cipriano is the biggest advocate the archdiocese has and if Brennan is found guilty its just another black eye and may effect his meal ticket ?

    It's funny someone recently called you out. I told people for years I questioned your credibility.

    ....and just think I was going to tell you and your readers why Father Harris was removed from ministry AGAIN.

    1. Dennis, you know that Brennan's accuser, Mark Bukowski, has already been busted for making up stories before, right?


      Dave Pierre


  22. Just because a guy with a history of drug addiction and a long arrest record, including being convicted of lying to law enforcement authorities, makes an accusation about something that supposedly happened years ago when he was a kid doesn't necessarily make it true, Dennis. The jury in that case certainly didn't think so.

    Only misguided zealots like yourself have your mind made up before the retrial begins. Keep rejoicing every time a priest is accused or found guilty of misconduct. It doesn't seem to be doing you any good.

  23. You are right. It does not mean it happened. I am fully aware there are people out there who claim to be victims and they are not. But you like to play with words by stating "the jury in that case" making it sound like all 12 members thought Brennan was innocent. If that was true he would not be facing a retrial and we would not be talking about him.

    Now I don't know if you are beginning to suffer from early stage dementia but we spoke earlier about the guilt or innocence of Brennan when you plastered liar on Mark. I asked you at the time"how could you do that when as a victim I'm not placing a guilt or innocence on Brennan until I hear testimony and evidence. (RECALL RALPH ?)

    ....and its not that I rejoice when a priest is accused, fact is I am saddened because it only means possibly another child was tortured and his life changed forever.

    p.s. Do I need to find our earlier conversation to refresh your memory ?

  24. Yes, Dennis, I've memorized every conversation we've ever had.

    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  25. The DA Is Full Of Shit!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  26. Looks like Mariana went back into hiding........or maybe she's working on a draft for Grand Jury III as a freelancer for the DA.

  27. Dennis is right about one thing, the retrial of Father Brennan is on for Oct. 24th. I guess after four years nobody down at the DA's office is in a hurry to retry this dog of a case.

  28. Check out who is now emailing on articles someone does not agree with. Recognize the name at the end of the first letter.

    1. Your shocked because you see someone's name ? What the hell is going on with this site ?

      Some person is shocked because they see a name at the end of a article. What would happen to this person if I threw them a bone ? Have a heart attack ?

      Ralph is getting beat up one side and down the other.

      And little old me has ended up doing Ralph's job.

      I always thought the Catholic Church would implode before this blog.Thought It would have to be around to give the excuses why.

  29. can I call myself a journalist now ? I want one of those hats editors wear. Oh, never mind I know you don't like editors.


    Ladies and gentlemen since Ralph likes to be an ass with his comments. I will fill you in on the whole story. Yes the retrial is scheduled for Oct. 24th. However in March (don't have exact date in front of me) all parties will meet once again and then in October prior to the trial

    I will now let Ralph fill in the blanks.

    My phone is ringing. Can that be the Beasley Firm with that job offer again ?

  30. Whew, what a mistake I just made. Happened to find a link back to this site and I am sure glad I have taken a long vacation from this nonsense. Though I was pretty active some time ago with issues raised here, it appears that this site has deteriorated to personal attacks, vicious comments, etc.

    The only issue that matters to this writer is that all PA citizens, including our children, are entitled to revised and more effective Statute of Limitation laws and such proposals are contained in legislative proposals sponsored by Rep. Mark Rozzi, House of Representatives.

    Michael Skiendzielewski
    Captain (retired)
    Philadelphia Police Dept

  31. Regardless of the legitimacy of the verdict in this case, what about the hundreds of other victims of clergy sexual abuse across the RCC in the US who will never have "their day in court" where a criminal case will/can be heard as a result of alleged criminal acts by certain clergy?

    Ask the surviving, heartbroken and forever-grieving family members of such families as the Baselice and McIlmail who lost their sons to drug overdoses after being sexually abused by clergy members of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia how and when will they be able to seek justice?

    Michael Skiendzielewski
    Captain (Retired)
    Philadelphia Police Dept.

  32. Ralph, I keep detailing comments here relative to this topic and they are not permanently posted. Any reason why?

    Michael Skiendzielewski

  33. I was all excited to read another story of false rape accusations after the fascinating article about the UVA rape. I have read several pages now and I'm sorry but this is all very conspiracy theory sounding and the one that seems to be running a factually inaccurate story is this Ralph guy. I don't think at this point that he could ever be objective with anything that happens. He seems to have reached a conclusion from the beginning that Gallagher is lying, but as I read this sounds like a typical conspiracy theorist's pattern of obsessive rantings. If you compare this to any page of craziness on the Illuminati or 9/11 truther, you will find the same tone of outrage. It was kinda a fun read I will give you that. I am someone that is a liberal and I think the false rape claims are terrible and should be brought to light. I am someone that thinks there was not enough evidence to put away Casey Anthony, but from what YOU are posting to clear their names, actually makes me think the men accused are guilty.


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