Johnny Clevinger – School Psychologist – Decades worth of homegrown child pornography

Police say the FBI is now involved in the case of a Carteret County school psychologist charged with sex crimes.

Investigators say agents will look at computers seized from the home of 51-year-old Johnny Clevinger last month. Police say Clevinger took hundreds of lewd photos of children dating back several decades.

The FBI will be looking for more pictures or evidence the photos were distributed.

Clevinger is being held in the Carteret County jail on a $250,000 bond. He’s charged with first-degree sexual exploitation of a minor and taking indecent liberties with a child.

Clevinger is suspended with pay from the Carteret County Public School System pending an investigation.

Investigators said some of the pictures of naked children found in school psychologist Johnny Clevinger’s home date back at least two decades.

Authorities said they also expect to find more photos on three computers they seized.

“A number of photographs [were taken] right there at the house, and there was some information that he was utilizing the computers for this type of activity,” District Attorney Scott Thomas said.

Some of Clevinger’s neighbors said they were suspicious that something was wrong in the home. One neighbor said she had even called child protective services in the past after worries about Clevinger’s adopted children.

Clevinger worked as a school psychologist for the Carteret County School System.

They said every employee must undergo a criminal background check.

Before coming to Carteret County, Clevinger worked for schools in Louisiana and North Carolina, including Wilkes County from 1984 to 1996. He then worked at Person County Schools from 1996 to 2001.

An online profile of Clevinger states he has worked with troubled adolescent boys. It also lists nudism as one of his interests, and includes links to nudist Web sites.

“If that’s his lifestyle, that’s up to him,” Thomas said. “But that’s not a defense in a situation where you may have illegal photographs of minor children.”

But authorities said the investigation into Clevinger is ongoing, and they still don’t know exactly who or how many children were photographed.

Clevinger was arrested after a store clerk found lewd photos in film Clevinger dropped off for processing. He is being held in the Carteret County jail on $250,000 bond and is charged with first degree sexual exploitation of a minor and taking indecent liberties with a child.

No plea deal in works for San Mateo County psychiatrist accused of molesting patients

Rumors that accused child molester Dr. William Ayres could avoid a criminal trial with a plea bargain were emphatically denied by both prosecution and defense attorneys who insist the disgraced child psychiatrist is marching toward a jury trial.

“We’ve never sought to plea bargain the case, we don’t plan to plea bargain the case, and we’re ready for trial,” said San Mateo County Chief Deputy District Attorney Steve Wagstaffe.

Doron Weinberg, Ayres’ defense attorney, said Friday there have not been “serious discussions” of a plea deal for the former San Mateo doctor.

Ayres, 77, is accused of molesting dozens of preadolescent male patients from as far back as the 1970s, though just seven accusers fall under the state’s statute of limitations, which requires such charges be brought by victims who are under 29 or born after 1998. He is formally facing 20 counts of felony molestation.

Pretrial motions filed in San Mateo County Superior Court in Redwood City last week were heard by Judge Beth Freeman, who was assigned to the trial on Monday. She granted the prosecution permission to call to the witness stand several men who claim Ayres molested them before the statute of limitations.

Prosecutors had requested that 17 alleged out-of-statute victims testify. While the judge permitted just four alleged victims to testify, she also allowed some of the parents to offer testimony against Ayres.

The judge rejected the defense’s motion to exclude testimony from Diana Emerson, a child abuse expert whom Wagstaffe said would offer insight into why children don’t report molestations right away.

There was no ruling on how many character witnesses Ayres could have take the stand on his behalf, but Weinberg said on Friday he had at least 15 people in mind to speak on the doctor’s behalf.

For most of his career, Ayres was one of San Mateo County’s most respected child psychiatrists, in 2002 receiving a lifetime achievement award from the Board of Supervisors for his work with youth. He served for more than a decade as president of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry.

Ayres admitted to performing physical examinations on juvenile psychiatric patients, sometimes of their genitals. His defense attorney has argued that these examinations were legitimate and routine practice that has been misunderstood by prosecutors and misinterpreted by the accusers.

“Dr. Ayres has had a distinguished career and he is not a child molester,” Weinberg said. “He has declared his innocence of all these charges and we hope that he will be vindicated at trial.”

One of the out-of-statute witnesses slated to testify for the prosecution spoke with Bay Area News Group several months before Ayres’ arrest, claiming he was molested by the psychiatrist in 1985 when he was 15 years old. Greg Hogue was one of the alleged victims who cooperated in the yearlong investigation leading up to Ayres’ April 2007 arrest.

Hogue told police in 2006 that his school district referred him to Ayres after a note he wrote to a classmate was misconstrued as a suicide threat.

Jury selection is scheduled to begin Monday morning with a three-day hardship inquiry that will gauge whether potential jurors are able to sit for an eight-week trial. The process will end Wednesday and resume June 16. Opening statements could start by the end of that week, according to Wagstaffe.

Ayres remains out of custody on $750,000 bail. He is expected to return to court Monday for the continuation of pretrial motions.

A church therapist hired to treat a pedophile Priest as a childl molester himself

A church therapist hired by the state’s Roman Catholic diocese to treat the Rev. Edward Paquette for fondling boys in Burlington in the 1970s was himself a child molester, according to court papers on file in Massachusetts.

The therapist, the Rev. Thomas Kane of Whitinsville, Mass., engaged in sex acts with an Uxbridge, Mass., boy for nine years, beginning in 1968 and ending in 1977, a lawsuit filed by Kane’s alleged victim said.

At the time of the alleged sexual abuse, Kane was executive director of the House of Affirmation in Whitinsville, where Paquette was sent to be treated in 1974 after the Vermont diocese learned he had molested two boys in Rutland.

There is no evidence that then Bishop John Marshall or church officials in Vermont and elsewhere knew of Kane’s alleged sexual misconduct with the Uxbridge boy in the 1970s.

The lawsuit by Kane’s alleged victim was filed in Suffolk County Superior Court in Boston in 1993 and was settled out of court two years later for $42,500. The Free Press does not identify the alleged victims of sexual assaults without their consent.

According to court papers, Kane befriended the plaintiff in the case when the person was a 9-year-old altar boy at St. Mary’s Church in Uxbridge in 1968 and first molested him at Kane’s vacation cottage in Upton, Mass.

Over the next nine years, Kane engaged in sex acts with the boy in Kane’s car, at St. Mary’s Church and at other church property in the Worcester area, sometimes after providing wine to the youth, according to the lawsuit.

Kane also once had the boy, at age 14, expose himself to other men at a site along the Charles River in Boston, the lawsuit said.

“Kane purchased a skimpy T-shirt and stretch pants,” the lawsuit said. “Kane dressed plaintiff in the clothing, brought him to Charles River and had him sit on a bench with his legs apart, genitals exposed where passing men could see plaintiff’s exposed genitals.”

Efforts last week to reach the former Uxbridge altar boy and his lawyer were unsuccessful.

The House of Affirmation was closed in 1990, several years after Kane was removed as its executive director for alleged financial improprieties, according to news reports at the time.

Kane could not be reached for comment. He is still a priest associated with the Worcester diocese, but Ray Delisle, a diocesan spokesman, said last week he did not know where Kane was and did not know how to reach him. News reports from 2002 placed him in Guadalajara, Mexico.

“He is a priest without faculties,” Delisle said. “I know that to be the case with him.”
Kane and Paquette

Kane’s treatment of Paquette at the House of Affirmation took place between 1974 and 1978.

It ended when Paquette’s own priestly faculties were suspended by the Vermont diocese after parents of a number of altar boys at Christ the King Church in Burlington complained to Marshall that Paquette had molested their sons.

Marshall knew Paquette had previously molested boys at parishes in Indiana and Massachusetts but decided to hire him in 1972 after being convinced by an Indiana church psychiatrist that Paquette’s sexual deviancy had been cured, according to church records.

Paquette’s sexual abuse of altar boys is the subject of 19 lawsuits on file at Chittenden Superior Court. Four have been resolved through out-of-court settlements or via trial; 15 are pending, including the case that ended in a mistrial last week.

Diocesan documents in the Paquette cases show that Marshall relied heavily on Kane’s advice when it came to deciding whether Paquette should remain a parish priest despite his conduct with altar boys.

“It is my opinion that Father Paquette should return as soon as possible to a parish setting and observe the signals of caution which we have discussed,” Kane wrote to Marshall on Nov. 6, 1974. “It is also strongly recommended that Father Paquette come to see me once a month and he has agreed to this.”

Kane’s letter said Paquette suffered from a “moderate frustration neurosis” and that Paquette’s “immature sexual behavior” was a part of the neurosis.

Paquette, in a separate letter to Marshall sent Nov. 3, 1974, said Kane had been a “tremendous help … All is going well. I am praying that I will be alright.”

Marshall wrote back to Kane on Nov. 13, 1974, that he would follow Kane’s advice “as quickly as possible” and give Paquette a parish assignment.

“I would ask that you keep in mind that he has a rather extensive history,” Marshall wrote. “The reason I mention that fact is that past members of the personnel board … are aware of this problem and this, combined with a future failure, would greatly influence my prudential judgment concerning his remaining in the diocese.”

Over the next 3 1/2 years, diocesan records show, Paquette wrote a series of letters to Marshall indicating he was continuing to see Kane at the House of Affirmation.

Kane did not write Marshall again until March 28, 1978, after parents at Christ the King Church began complaining to Marshall that Paquette was molesting their sons.

“Father Edward O. Paquette presented himself for an interview today and explained the recent situation,” Kane wrote. “I had terminated with Father Paquette on 21 February, 1978 and at that time he stated there was no behavior in the area of the problematic. Obviously, he was not reporting the facts.”

A week later, Marshall wrote back to Kane, telling Kane he was thinking of leaving Paquette at Christ the King despite the complaints and asking Kane for his opinion.

“Despite the demands of two sets of irate parents that ‘something be done about this,’ Father Paquette’s pastor and I are determined to take the risk of leaving him in his present assignment,” Marshall wrote Kane on April 4, 1978.

“Our thinking is that, knowing the awareness of others, concerning his problem, Father Paquette will have reason for ‘self control,” Marshall continued. “Do you agree with this thinking?”

Kane wrote back on April 10 in support of the plan.

“I do agree with your thinking,” Kane wrote. “I do not believe that it is ‘too risky’ to leave Father Paquette in his present assignment but, of course, can make no predictions,” his letter said in part.

By April 18, 1978, increased pressure from parents to do something about Paquette forced Marshall to change his mind.

“The situation had become so explosive that I had no other recourse but to ask Father Paquette to leave the parish immediately,” Marshall explained in a letter to Kane.
Kane past raised at trial

Kane’s alleged sexual abuse while at the House of Affirmation has not been an issue during the clergy abuse trials in Burlington.

Jerome O’Neill, who represents the alleged Paquette victims in the cases, said that’s because there’s no evidence anyone in Vermont — or elsewhere — knew anything about Kane being a possible child molester until many years later.

An aspect of Kane’s past, however did come up briefly when the Rev. Thomas Doyle, a national advocate for victims of clergy abuse, testified in the clergy abuse case that ended last week in a mistrial.

“He’s fraudulent,” Doyle said of Kane while being questioned by diocesan attorney Tom McCormick about Kane’s treatment of Paquette in the 1970s.

“He was still thought of as a legitimate health care professional,” retorted McCormick before continuing on with his questioning.

Doyle, in an interview outside the courtroom, said his fraudulent remark was a reference to evidence found by a Worcester, Mass., newspaper in 2002 that Kane had never gotten the doctorate in psychology degree from University of Birmingham in England that Kane had listed on his professional resume.

The newspaper reported that it had contacted the university and was told the school had no record of Kane attending classes there or obtaining a doctoral degree.

“That doctorate stuff, it’s just phony,” Doyle said.