Sioux City Native Praises IA Att. General's Efforts to Gather Clergy Sex Abuse Accusations, 5:32

Jun 3, 2019

SNAP President and Sioux City Native Tim Lennon in front of the Cathedral of the Epiphany last month.

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The Iowa Attorney General’s Office says it has set up a hotline for people to call in and report clergy abuse. The office says 8 trained advocates will take down information from survivors. The office also has 10 alternates to answer calls.

Tim Lennon is a Sioux City native with the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests. He’s been asking for this.

(0603lennon   0:12) We understand that because most victims never come forward, there needs to be easy access for them to report some of these crimes.

The Attorney General’s Office has also written to the state’s four Catholic dioceses, asking them to voluntarily send them their records of clergy sex abuse by August 1st. In an email, the office said they expect each diocese to comply.

Jury selection began Monday in what is expected to be a monthlong civil trial over allegations that former Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad pressured an official to quit because he was gay, a case Branstad's attorney predicts will escalate into an "unhinged attack on the Republican Party."

Iowa Workers' Compensation Commissioner Chris Godfrey, a Democrat, sued Branstad for discrimination in 2012, shortly after he was elected to the first of his two most recent terms as governor. Godfrey, who couldn't be fired under a provision in Iowa law intending his six-year term to be insulated from politics, alleged Branstad pressured him to resign by cutting more than a third of his salary.

Branstad, now the U.S. ambassador to China living in Beijing, has agreed to return to Iowa testify on June 14 only, and attorneys in the case have said they won't call him back to the witness stand.