“It has been a long, hard-fought battle for victims of former priest John Salazar through several criminal and civil trials in Texas and California spanning a period of over 26 years. I am honored to have represented in civil cases four young men from Texas featured in the Los Angeles Times article dated December 30, 2013.
John Salazar’s guilty plea yesterday in Swisher County, Texas came about only because these brave young men, as well as others who have just recently come forward, and their families stood up and demanded justice and continued to fight despite great obstacles. They did not give up. They wanted to ensure that no other child would ever again suffer sexual abuse at the hands of “Father John.” Credit also goes to the Swisher County DA’s office and the Texas Rangers for their persistence in following through with the investigation of the criminal charges and the new accusations made against Salazar during the course of that investigation.
But while Salazar himself finally acknowledged his guilt, his former employers, the officials of the Piarist Order, the Archdiocese of Los Angeles and the Diocese of Amarillo, the organizations who put so many children in harms way in the first place when they knew that Salazar was a predator, have not acknowledged their role in these crimes.
As the LA Times article painfully illustrates, parents and the public were kept in the dark about Salazar’s “predatory nature” as these organizations covered up his crimes for decades.
Our laws, particularly regarding the statutes of limitations, must be changed to give victims access to the courts to hold accountable not only the perpetrators but the organizations and the individuals who protect them.”