Demonstrators shout ‘shame on you’ as former Catholic cardinal Theodore McCarrick pleads not guilty in child sexual assault case

Former Cardinal Theodore McCarrick passes protesters as he leaves the Dedham courthouse after pleading not guilty during his first appearance for sexual assault charges on on September 3, 2021 in Dedham, Massachusetts.
Former Cardinal Theodore McCarrick passes protesters as he leaves the Dedham courthouse after pleading not guilty during his first appearance for sexual assault charges on on September 3, 2021 in Dedham, Massachusetts. Scott Eisen/Getty Images
  • McCarrick pleaded not guilty to three counts of child sex assault, according to the Washington Post.
  • McCarrick is accused of abusing a 16-year-old boy in the 1970s at his brother’s wedding, the Post reported.
  • Crowds of onlookers yelled “Shame on you!” as McCarrick entered the courtroom, according to the report.
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Disgraced ex-cardinal Theodore McCarrick pleaded not guilty on Friday to charges that he sexually assaulted a teen in the 1970s, the Washington Post reported.

Demonstrators outside a suburban Massachusetts courthouse shouted “Shame on you!” at the disgraced former Catholic leader, according to the report.

McCarrick entered his not guilty plea in Dedham District Court. Friday’s court appearance was the first public sighting of the former Catholic archbishop since he was hit with sex abuse allegations in 2018, the Post said.

After pleading not guilty, McCarrick was ordered to turn over his passport and stay away from people under the age of 18, according to the Post.

The sexual assault charges stem from an incident in which McCarrick is accused of abusing a 16-year-old boy in the 1970s, at the boy’s brother’s wedding. More than a dozen people have now publicly accused McCarrick of sexual abuse or harassment, the Post reported.

The man whose abuse allegations led to charges against McCarrick is now in his 60s. He was present in the courtroom on Friday, the Post said.

“We want to see McCarrick looking at us. The look on his face. That’s why I’m driving. That’s why it’s a big deal,” Karen, a sister of the accuser, told the Post. The newspaper did not name the accuser, or give the last name of the accuser’s sister, in order to protect his identity.

According to the Post, the accuser comes from a large Catholic family and his grandparents were close friends of McCarrick. His sister said that he was baptized by McCarrick, and then later abused for several years.

The accuser’s sister told the Post that she and other family members drove to Dedham to witness the trial because they consider it historic.

“You can go through all these other processes [including civil suits and Vatican probes] but they never face their victims. I think it’s a big deal,” she said.