Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Inky, Rolling Stone Ignore Detective Walsh Bombshell

The Sounds of Silence
By Ralph Cipriano
for BigTrial.net

If you want a perfect illustration of what's wrong with the media, let's talk about The Philadelphia Inquirer and Rolling Stone, and their stubborn refusal to deal with how they blew to hell the "Billy Doe" fake rape story.

Last Tuesday on this blog, we printed a news story about a 12-page affidavit filed in Common Pleas Court by retired Detective Joe Walsh. In that affidavit, Walsh, the D.A.'s lead detective on the Philly archdiocese sex abuse scandal, detailed one lie after another that he caught Billy Doe/Danny Gallagher telling. Gallagher even admitted he lied and "just made stuff up," the detective says. Walsh repeatedly concluded that Gallagher wasn't telling the truth when he claimed he was raped as a 10 and 11 year-old altar boy in separate attacks by two priests and a schoolteacher.

Scene from Inky newsroom
In his affidavit, Walsh also detailed the numerous times he told the prosecutor in the case, former Assistant District Attorney Mariana Sorensen, that Gallagher wasn't a credible witness, and that the evidence in the case contradicted Gallagher's crazy stories of abuse.

None of this material, of course, was ever turned over to the defense, in violation of federal law. The entire 12-page affidavit is a textbook case of prosecutorial misconduct that may not only get the schoolteacher out of jail, but it may blow out any possible retrial of Msgr. William J. Lynn.

And it came straight from the mouth of a retired detective, who has nothing to gain by saying any of this, except, of course, to clear his conscience. In the news business, that's what we call a reliable source.

But what's been the response of the Inquirer, which in the past seven years has printed 59 fake Billy Doe got raped stories? And Rolling Stone, which printed a long Sabrina Rubin Erdely fake gang rape story about poor little Billy?

Cue Simon and Garfunkel singing The Sounds of Silence.

Although the Inquirer has had the Walsh affidavit since last Wednesday, they've decided they'll continue to pretend that it's just not happening.

Last week, Amy Buckman, the Inquirer's spokesperson, wrote in an email, "Thanks for the alert," after I forwarded her the blog post about the Walsh affidavit, as well as a copy of the affidavit. And then almost everybody at the Inky went back to taking a nap.

The Scottsboro Boys
At least one reporter, however, in the combined Inky-Daily News-philly.com newsroom, columnist Christine Flowers, gets it. On her radio show Sunday night on WPHT, where I was a guest, Flowers, herself a lawyer, compared the Msgr. Lynn case to the infamous Scottsboro Boys.

In that case, nine African-American teenagers in 1930s Alabama were falsely accused and railroaded for allegedly raping a couple of white women.

Of course, none of it was true. Flowers may be right. One day, we may look back at the Catholic witch hunts conducted under Seth Williams in Philadelphia, and view them the same way we now view the racist Scottsboro Boys trials of 1930s Alabama.

Because it's only in an atmosphere of extreme prejudice where you don't need evidence to convict people, just false witnesses telling phony rape stories that fit the prejudices of the day. Such as every Roman Catholic priest is a pedophile.

Meanwhile, back at the Inquirer, Buckman and other editors have not responded to subsequent requests for comment on their continued slumber through the complete unraveling of the Billy Doe story.

As I have noted on this blog before, the Inquirer's posture in any major case coming out of the courts is to blindly side with the prosecutors. The Inky playbook: print allegations as proven facts, convict the defendants pre-trial in the press, and taint the jury pool.

The problem when you're functioning as press agents for the prosecution, however, is what happens if they get it wrong? That's precisely what's happened with the Billy Doe case. Not only did the prosecutors get it wrong, they were also bad actors. If you believe the Walsh affidavit, the D.A.'s office was guilty of intentional prosecutorial misconduct because they put a star witness on the stand that they knew wasn't credible.

This story should matter because Gallagher's testimony sent four men to jail, one of whom died there. It also generated sensational headlines for the past seven years about a vicious rape spree that Detective Walsh now says never really happened.

In the Inquirer's defense, the Inky newsroom right now is preoccupied with an ongoing game of musical chairs. All 200 journalists in the newsroom are in the process of re-applying for their own jobs, which have been posted in some kind of open competition.

It's the same game the newspaper played back in March with top editors. Everybody changes seats, and then shakes hands on the new, improved Inquirer. That's what they do over at the Inky, rather than write about what's going on with Detective Walsh and the Billy Doe case. They play musical chairs.

Excellent game of musical chairs, fellas!
At least the Inky has a spokesperson who fields my questions and occasionally responds. Over at Rolling Stone, where they've already had to retract one Sabrina Rubin Erdely fake gang rape story, I never even got a response to requests for comment.

In the old days, newspapers used to employ ombudsmen who would investigate readers' complaints. And when the paper screwed up, the ombudsman would write about it. But now they just continue to pretend they're infallible.

Meanwhile, public trust in journalism is at an all-time low. And the Inky and Rolling Stone are doing their best to show us why.


  1. The hysteria surrounding the public’s perception of priests could just a well be substituted for politicians, who are equally maligned by the media. It’s a perfectly acceptable practice in our country to pin everything that is wrong in the country on politicians. From the general public to mainstream media, all politicians are self-serving and only run for office to better their own lives. Its outright discrimination, no one should be party to this type of discrimination, least of all the media.

    In one recent politically motivated trial a prosecutor made the statement “that all politicians are crooks”, the defense was aware of his statements but to what avail, after years and years of demeaning the character of politicians, who would have cared, what difference would it have made to anyone, least of all a jury.

    As prosecutors can do and say whatever they want with little fear of any punishment,as no Inquirer reporter would ever stand up against a prosecutor for a citizen that has been falsely accused.

    If only the Inquirer, who prides itself, on rooting out corruption would find the courage to uncover what prosecutors are doing to innocent people. As the current administration has shown little regard for moving the justice department forward, we will be see harsher sentences. We need the media on the side of the people.

  2. Another trial that was a glaring disgrace on the part of the prosecution was the Traffic Court trail, if I am to believe what I read in the Inquirer, the paper wanted to see good people go to jail for the rest of their lives. Good people, it’s outrageous to think we behave like Romans watching with delight people eaten by hungry lions. How low have we sunk as a people that we somehow think we benefit by others misery.

    When we watch an injustice and do not comment we are guilty and I can say the Inquirer is supremely guilty in what they did to the defendants of the Traffic Court trial.
    How the Inquirer ignored the fact that the FBI agent on the case was caught lying multiple times, one of the prosecutors removed a ticket from a file jacket to change the disposition on a ticket to try to prove the Judges erred in their rulings and she was caught in the act, as well as audio tapes that were favorable to the defendants that somehow malfunctioned, to the prosecutor who when things did not go his way, repeatedly referenced to bank robbers robbing banks.

    If the Inquirer listened to the statics that were put forth their theory of friends and family having tickets thrown out would have evaporated. Millions and millions of dollars are no longer collected from the revenue that Traffic Court put in the state coffers, thanks to feds.
    Being party to incriminating and swaying the jury should be a crime, and the Inquirer is guilty on all counts. Does the Inquirer want to see fellow citizens face a lifetime of humiliation, scorn and shame for a story?
    I know how the prosecution benefits by a conviction, lawyers that work for the government retain their jobs and get promotions. I don’t see how the Inquirer benefits, not reporting the truth harms them in the long run as well as every citizen reading their one sided articles. Are they so starved for a high profile corruption case to sell papers that they turn a blind eye to the truth.

    Citizens can handle the truth, we are starved for the truth, please print it .We are wasting so much energy hating one another, stop enabling the prosecutions lies.

  3. “And everybody’s asking the question, ‘What do the Russians have on Donald Trump financially, politically, or personally that he’s always catering to them?” the California Democrat asserted. Spoken by Barbara Pelosi

    I ask what do prosecutors have on the Inquirer financially,politically or personally,that they are always catering to the them by hiding crucial evidence from the public.

  4. Obstructing justice is exactly what the Inquirer is doing by aiding in stripping defendants of their basic right to a fair trial by printing the prosecution side of a case condemning a defendant before they set foot in a courtroom.

  5. Ralph, could you provide your email to me at Foresightservices1@verizon.net
    Jack Rossiter

  6. California just passed legislation that was signed by Gov. Brown into law that makes it a felony for a prosecutor to withhold Brady evidence from the defense. This should be the law of the land, each state should do its part to pass this much needed legislation. We need this type of law desperately in Pennsylvania as well,we all should contact our elected officials asking for a similar law to be passed in our commonwealth.

  7. Why havent other Catholic advocacy groups taken up the cause of the wrongly jailed Catholic educators? I cant find word one about Walsh's affidavit on Catholics4Change?
    And why has the Inquirer failed to write about the Walsh affidavit? Where does the case stand now? Nothing is going to bring Fr Engelhardt back, but Mr Shero should be released immediately
    The Inquirer has recently run other pieces about those incarcerated for crimes they did not commit. Why not Engelhardt and Shero?

    1. Hey there. In answer to your question as to why you won't find anything on Catholics4Change (C4C) about the Walsh deposition is quite simple.

      The C4C blog is a 'victim's' support group - pure and simple. Everything else is virtually ignored.

      If you've ever watched Godfather II, you'll recollect the comment that Michael made about Hyman Roth who had been 'dying from the same heart attack for the last 20 years'.

      C4C can top that. On it, you can read about sexual abuse accounts allegedly experienced 50 years ago.

      Recently resurfaced repressed memories, or just folks blaming their current life situations on what may or may not happened long ago?

      It's anyone's guess.

  8. Catholics4Change is a forum for the Dennis Eckers of the world. The only villains on that blog wear collars.

    The Inky is dedicated to burying the truth of the Billy Doe story. No matter what the facts say.


Thoughtful commentary welcome. Trolling, harassing, and defaming not welcome. Consistent with 47 U.S.C. 230, we have the right to delete without warning any comments we believe are obscene, lewd, lascivious, filthy, excessively violent, harassing, or otherwise objectionable, whether or not such material is constitutionally protected.

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.