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Michael Baker

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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 12, 2013 | By Harriet Ryan and Victoria Kim, Los Angeles Times
The Archdiocese of Los Angeles has agreed to pay nearly $10 million to four men who say they were molested by one of the region's most notorious pedophile priests. The agreement brings to an end four lawsuits against the archdiocese involving Michael Baker, a charismatic parish priest accused of molesting at least 23 boys over three decades. The church has settled numerous cases brought by Baker's alleged victims in the past, but the $9.9-million settlement announced Tuesday is the first settlement since the January release of 12,000 pages of internal archdiocese records about abuse.
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NEWS
March 12, 2013 | From Times Staff
The Archdiocese of Los Angeles has agreed to pay nearly $10 million to four men who claim they were molested by a pedophile priest in what Cardinal Roger Mahony has called the most troubling case of his tenure, a lawyer for the men said Tuesday. The agreement settled four lawsuits against the church concerning Michael Baker, who authorities believe molested 23 boys during three decades as a parish priest and hospital chaplain. The settlement is the first since the church released 12,000 pages of internal personnel files about its handling of abuse allegations, including scores of documents detailing how Mahony and a top aide dealt with Baker.
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 19, 1992 | ALAN ABRAHAMSON, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Twice a week, at least, Marilyn Clark visits the cemetery where her brother, John Mayeski, rests. It's been nearly 14 years since Robert Alton Harris killed him. And still she keeps coming by. The cemetery in Sorrento Valley is on her way home from work, Clark said. And it's so soothing to talk to her brother, especially when things get hectic--as they have been these past few days, when Harris was due to be executed Tuesday.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
June 16, 2010 | By Carol J. Williams, Los Angeles Times
Cardinal Roger Mahony defended his 1986 decision not to inform police about a priest who admitted he molested children, saying his actions were consistent with church policy at that time, according to a deposition made public Tuesday. Mahony has long said he made mistakes in allowing Michael Baker to stay in the priesthood after he confessed to having sexually assaulted young boys. But in the deposition — the first to be publicly released covering Mahony's handling of Los Angeles Archdiocese molestation cases — the cardinal gives the clearest picture yet of his actions regarding Baker, who is serving a 10-year prison sentence for child molestation.
OPINION
February 23, 2005
Your Feb. 19 article on houses in Mission Viejo that are sliding down a hillside states: "Experts say it is nearly impossible to predict a slide, and nearly as difficult to determine who -- homeowners, builders, geologists or cities -- should be held responsible when one occurs. Still, homeowners often turn to the courts to sort it all out." A perfect example of our litigious society. Never mind that hillsides have been sliding since the beginning of time, now somebody must be at fault.
OPINION
January 23, 2006
Re "Ex-Priest Is Arrested in Abuse Case," Jan. 20 After reading time and again about priests in the Los Angeles Archdiocese abusing children, I feel that the real culprit is Cardinal Roger Mahony. Over and over he has made poor choices to hide the dysfunctional side of the Catholic Church, hoping, and I'm sure praying, that if he sent these priests to other parishes, the problem would just go away. As a third-grade teacher, it is painful for me to think of all the innocent, vulnerable children who were repeatedly abused.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
September 23, 2009 | STEVE LOPEZ
If you've got rosary beads handy, please say a prayer for the leader of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. Last week was not a good one for Cardinal Roger Mahony, and there may be no letup in weeks to come if a certain monsignor continues to testify in a deposition being taken as part of a civil case against Mahony and the diocese. Msgr. Richard Loomis, former vicar of clergy for the archdiocese, said under oath that in the year 2000 he wrote a memo advocating that the archdiocese inform police about allegations of sexual abuse by a now-defrocked priest named Michael Baker.
NEWS
April 16, 1992 | ALAN ABRAHAMSON, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Seated around an oblong table in the quiet hush of a plush office, Sharron Mankins cried and cried Wednesday as she told Gov. Pete Wilson about her son, Michael Baker. He loved to fish and ride a skateboard, she said. He was bashful and considerate, she said. "And a part of me died when I lost Michael," when he was killed nearly 14 years ago by Robert Alton Harris, she said as the tears spilled forth.
OPINION
March 21, 2007
Re "Mahony accounts of abuse case tape differ," March 20 Once again, Cardinal Roger Mahony has been caught in a lie. He lied to the people of Los Angeles about Michael Baker several years ago. Now we find that he got caught lying to his flock in October 2005 about Lynn Caffoe. When will he learn that, when in doubt, start with the truth? It is the best advice that any leader can follow. He certainly is not getting that advice from his lawyers. Because his credibility as the shepherd of the Catholic Church in Los Angeles is completely nonexistent, I urge him to resign.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
June 16, 2010 | By Carol J. Williams, Los Angeles Times
Cardinal Roger Mahony defended his 1986 decision not to inform police about a priest who admitted he molested children, saying his actions were consistent with church policy at that time, according to a deposition made public Tuesday. Mahony has long said he made mistakes in allowing Michael Baker to stay in the priesthood after he confessed to having sexually assaulted young boys. But in the deposition — the first to be publicly released covering Mahony's handling of Los Angeles Archdiocese molestation cases — the cardinal gives the clearest picture yet of his actions regarding Baker, who is serving a 10-year prison sentence for child molestation.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
September 23, 2009 | STEVE LOPEZ
If you've got rosary beads handy, please say a prayer for the leader of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. Last week was not a good one for Cardinal Roger Mahony, and there may be no letup in weeks to come if a certain monsignor continues to testify in a deposition being taken as part of a civil case against Mahony and the diocese. Msgr. Richard Loomis, former vicar of clergy for the archdiocese, said under oath that in the year 2000 he wrote a memo advocating that the archdiocese inform police about allegations of sexual abuse by a now-defrocked priest named Michael Baker.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 15, 2009 | Richard Winton
A former Los Angeles priest convicted of molesting two boys has been called before a federal grand jury investigating how the Archdiocese of Los Angeles and Cardinal Roger M. Mahony handled priest abuse cases, a source told The Times. Former priest Michael Stephen Baker said he informed Mahony two decades ago that he sexually abused children, but he was allowed to remain in the ministry and victimized others. In 2007, Baker was sent to state prison for 10 years for molesting two boys.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 4, 2007 | John Spano, Times Staff Writer
Former Roman Catholic priest Michael Stephen Baker, who authorities say ranks among the Los Angeles Archdiocese's most prolific child molesters, pleaded guilty Monday to sexually abusing two boys and was sentenced to 10 years and four months in prison. The 59-year-old defrocked priest, who was wearing a jail-issued orange jumpsuit, sat impassively as some of his accusers and their supporters testified about how he had ruined the lives of innocent children.
OPINION
March 21, 2007
Re "Mahony accounts of abuse case tape differ," March 20 Once again, Cardinal Roger Mahony has been caught in a lie. He lied to the people of Los Angeles about Michael Baker several years ago. Now we find that he got caught lying to his flock in October 2005 about Lynn Caffoe. When will he learn that, when in doubt, start with the truth? It is the best advice that any leader can follow. He certainly is not getting that advice from his lawyers. Because his credibility as the shepherd of the Catholic Church in Los Angeles is completely nonexistent, I urge him to resign.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 8, 2007 | John Spano, Times Staff Writer
A former Roman Catholic priest said in court Wednesday that the rights of homosexuals have been violated by a state law that makes it easier to prosecute gay pedophiles than heterosexual child molesters. It apparently was the first time that gay rights had been introduced into the ongoing prosecution of current and former Catholic priests alleged to have molested children. The state law in question imposes no time limits on prosecuting heterosexuals who force intercourse.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 13, 2006 | Jessica Garrison, Times Staff Writer
Prosecutors announced Tuesday that they intend to seek additional molestation charges against defrocked priest Michael Stephen Baker on behalf of a second alleged victim. Los Angeles County Deputy Dist. Atty. Mark Beaart said he would file an amended complaint next week against Baker, whose case Cardinal Roger M. Mahony has said is the one that "troubles me the most."
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 16, 2002
Here is the text of a letter Tuesday from Cardinal Roger M. Mahony to all priests in the Catholic Archdiocese of Los Angeles. May 14, 2002 My Brother Priests: We have all been overwhelmed for many weeks now with the constant publicity highlighting the sexual abuse of minors by Catholic priests all across the country.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 12, 2006 | Jessica Garrison and John Spano, Times Staff Writers
Less than two weeks after Cardinal Roger M. Mahony announced a landmark deal to settle lawsuits brought by 45 people who said they were molested by Catholic priests, the focus of the Southern California clergy sex scandal moves back to the criminal courts. Former priest Michael Stephen Baker is due in court today for a hearing; he has been charged with molesting a boy after he had confessed to the cardinal that he was an abuser. He pleaded not guilty at an arraignment earlier this year.
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