The spokesman also said that the archdiocese encouraged the attorney general to consider a wider investigation into all bodies with a child protection mandate, including other charities and public schools, in the interests of the public good. "Clearly the attorney general has decided to go another way," the spokesman said.
On Oct. 15, the Archdiocese of Washington released a list of clergy who had been credibly accused of sexual abuse. At the time of that release, the archdiocese stressed that no priest currently in ministry had been accused of sexual abuse, and that no credible allegations had been received concerning the abuse of minors in nearly twenty years.
News of the attorney general's investigation comes only one day after the opening of a special hotline for residents of the district to report allegations of clerical sexual abuse. That line was announced Monday, Oct. 22 by federal prosecutors at the Superior Court Division of the U.S. Attorney's Office for the District of Columbia.
Following the publication of the Pennsylvania grand jury report in July, attorneys general in several states have announced similar inquiries, including in Michigan, Missouri, Maryland, New York, and New Jersey. Last week, federal prosecutors served subpoenas to the dioceses of Pennsylvania, opening a new investigation into clerical sexual abuse in that state.
The Washington attorney general specifically emphasised the trend, saying in his remarks Tuesday that "our investigation brings the count of states with open investigations to 14."
(Story continues below)
Subscribe to our daily newsletter
At Catholic News Agency, our team is committed to reporting the truth with courage, integrity, and fidelity to our faith. We provide news about the Church and the world, as seen through the teachings of the Catholic Church. When you subscribe to the CNA UPDATE, we'll send you a daily email with links to the news you need and, occasionally, breaking news.
As part of this free service you may receive occasional offers from us at EWTN News and EWTN. We won't rent or sell your information, and you can unsubscribe at any time.
The Archdiocese of Washington is home to nearly 700,000 Catholics, six Catholic colleges and universities, and 93 Catholic schools.
As the last archdiocese to be led by former cardinal Theodore McCarrick, Washington has been the subject of considerable attention and scrutiny during a summer in which several different sexual abuse scandals have unfolded at once.
Despite accusations of sexual abuse or harassment against McCarrick concerning his time in several dioceses in New York and New Jersey, no public accusations have been made concerning his time in Washington, either while archbishop or in retirement.