New Orleans Ex priest indicted, the 91-year-old allegedly raped a boy in 1970s.

Pursuit of Truth and Accountability

The district attorney’s office aims to uncover the truth and establish accountability in the case involving Father Lawrence Hecker. They intend to shed light on the matter to contribute to the restoration of affected lives and provide a sense of closure for those involved.

Archdiocese’s Involvement and Bankruptcy

The Archdiocese of New Orleans disclosed that Father Hecker had been included in the list of clergy removed from ministry due to the abuse of a minor back in 2018. In response to several clergy sexual abuse lawsuits, the archdiocese announced its decision to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection on May 1, 2020.

Past Confession and Misconduct

The Guardian reported that in 1999, Father Hecker admitted to engaging in sexual misconduct with seven teenage boys between 1966 and 1979. Despite this confession, he was allowed to continue in ministry until his retirement in March 2002. During this time, he was sent to a psychiatric treatment facility, which diagnosed him with pedophilia. However, he was not removed from ministry.

In his 1999 confession, Father Hecker acknowledged taking steps to avoid being alone with individuals under 18, emphasizing a commitment to preventing any recurrence of such behavior.

Support from Abuse Survivor Network

The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP) expressed support for the district attorney’s efforts to indict Father Hecker. SNAP emphasized that the incarceration of abusers enhances the safety of children. They also criticized the leadership of the Archdiocese of New Orleans, particularly during Father Hecker’s time as a priest, asserting that they shielded him from authorities.

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