6th Day Of Deliberations In Church Sex Abuse Trial And Still No Verdict
By Tony Hanson and Walt Hunter
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The jury in the clergy sexual abuse case has finished its sixth day of deliberations without reaching a verdict.
The jury broke for the day after re-hearing trial testimony of statements made by defendant James Brennan during a church investigation of allegations of an assault during an overnight stay at the priest’s apartment.
Father James Brennan is accused of sexually assaulting a 14-year-old boy in 1996. During questioning by a church official in 2008, Brennan categorically denied he sexually assaulted the teen during that overnight stay at the priest’s apartment–or ever–although he conceded he did make a number of regrettable decisions that night, including giving into the boy’s demand to look at pornography on the internet. He also acknowledged that they slept in the same bed.
In related questioning, Father Brennan denied another witness’ allegation that he had seen Brennan massaging the boy’s shirtless shoulders during a party at the boy’s home. And church officials who had questioned Brennan before the official inquiry reported Brennan said he had been sexually abused by four boys as a child, but he later denied that.