The Court Rejected McCarrick’s Argument That He Was Prejudiced in His Defense Because the Events Occurred Years Ago
(Newark, NJ) – Today Judge Lisa M. Adubato, Essex County Superior Court Judge, denied a motion by former Cardinal Theodore E. McCarrick to dismiss child sexual abuse claims against him. Judge Adubato wasted no time in issuing her ruling from the bench. The Court rejected McCarrick’s argument that he was prejudiced in his defense because the events occurred years ago and noted that the New Jersey Victims’ Rights Bill – which allows survivors to bring a claim no matter when the abuse occurred – was enacted with just that in mind.
“The judge’s decision today is another step in giving voice to the courageous survivors and a reckoning for those who committed the crimes and covered it up,” said attorney Jeff Anderson. “Perpetrators like McCarrick will be exposed and held accountable for the heinous acts they committed against children.”
The plaintiff, John Bellocchio, filed a lawsuit in December 2019 under the New Jersey Victim’s Rights Bill alleging that McCarrick sexually abused him in the 1990s at St. Francis of Assisi (Hackensack, NJ) while presiding over ceremonial services as Archbishop. Judge Adubato held that the plaintiff’s complaint sufficiently pleaded the allegations of sexual abuse by McCarrick.
Judge Adubato issued the same ruling in another case brought against McCarrick for child sexual abuse.