Skip to main content

Deposition released: Nienstedt admits church hid abuse allegations

  • Author:
  • Updated:
    Original:

The sworn testimony given by Archbishop John Nienstedt about how he handled allegations of priest abuse was released to the public Tuesday by a St. Paul victim's lawyer.

During the four-hour April 2 deposition, Nienstedt said he took steps to keep information secret related to abusive priests and did not give complete files to police, MPR News notes.

MPR News is putting the deposition on YouTube; see a transcript of the proceedings here.

The leader of the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis was deposed as part of a lawsuit filed by a man who says the Rev. Thomas Adamson sexually abused him in the 1970s.

The Catholic church has been repeatedly sued and under fire across the state in the last year, since a new state law removed a statute of limitations on lawsuits, which allowed victims who claim abuse to file suit even if the abuse took place decades ago.

The lawsuit filed against Adamson claims the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis and the Diocese of Winona created a public nuisance by keeping under wraps its documents related to priest abuse, and it claims that church leaders continue to jeopardize the safety of children, MPR News notes.

The victim's lawyer, Jeff Anderson, is handling a number of cases brought against the church by men who say they were victims of abuse. He plans Tuesday morning to release video and a transcript of Nienstedt's testimony.

The deposition was significant to Anderson's cases because it was the first time Nienstedt answered questions under oath about clergy sexual abuse since he became leader of the Twin Cities archdiocese in 2008. The deposition came to an abrupt and heated end, Anderson has said.

Archdiocese officials have said Nienstedt ended the deposition because he had reached a time limit, the Star Tribune reports.

Nienstedt released a statement after the deposition that said he had "repeatedly stated that the safety of children is the archdiocese’s highest priority."

Next Up

police lights squad car dark - Unsplash

Man dies after being shot during argument in Minneapolis

It's the 70th homicide in Minneapolis this year.

NearNorthEncampment

Minneapolis police, city employees clear out Near North encampment

This comes as colder weather moves through the state.

Screen Shot 2022-10-06 at 4.32.46 PM

New T.J. Maxx to open in the Twin Cities this month

Opening day will kick off with extended hours.

Screen Shot 2022-10-06 at 3.04.24 PM

Former Hennepin County commissioner arrested for DWI

The 61-year-old was being held in Hennepin County Jail as of Thursday morning.

Evie Carshare

Electric carshare network showing growth in Twin Cities

Over 25,000 trips have been logged in a six-month span.

Screen Shot 2022-10-06 at 1.11.01 PM

Popular Apple Valley ice arena could be replaced

A concept plan to transform the ice arena is being considered.

21a171abc8c6a3619739a786eed516a563206c38bec4a972944e80fa213b9ab6

Low river levels bring cancellations for St. Paul-New Orleans Viking cruises

The low water also impacted some barge traffic making its way down the river.

10.6 Tempest Weather Thumbnail

Drought tightens grip as Twin Cities reaches 'extreme' level

By this time last year, drought was fading fast in Minnesota.

Screen Shot 2022-10-06 at 11.23.49 AM

Woman missing since car crash has been found

The 49-year-old is believed to have been driving when the crash happened.

COVID-19 vaccine testing Mall of America

Minnesota's COVID-19 update for the week ending Tuesday, Oct. 4

The 7-day average number of cases has been dropping.

Related