Last Updated: Thursday, August 28, 2008 | 5:12 PM ET
About 50 people shouted and waved placards outside the Cornwall Public Inquiry Thursday to protest the treatment of a man who refused to testify before the commission and demand his release from jail
Perry Dunlop, a former Cornwall police officer, is in Toronto serving a six-month sentence for a civil conviction of contempt of court. He is to be sentenced next Wednesday for a criminal conviction of contempt of court.
The inquiry is looking into how authorities responded to allegations that young people were abused in Cornwall by more than a dozen men from the 1950s to the 1980s.
Dunlop’s role began when he learned in 1993 that the local Catholic diocese had paid a former altar boy $32,000 to drop his sexual abuse complaint against two priests. He handed the complaint to the Children’s Aid Society against orders from his superiors, leading to an OPP investigation.
Dunlop was charged and found guilty of contempt of court in the fall of 2007 after he was summoned by the inquiry from his home in B.C. as witness but refused to testify. He said he believed the inquiry is not about finding the truth and he had lost faith in a justice system that treated him as a bad guy.
‘We thought he was an important witness’
Peter Engelmann, lead counsel for the inquiry, acknowledged that Dunlop’s supporters are concerned and upset, but stood by the commission’s decision to take the hard line in their efforts to get Dunlop to testify.
“We took the position we did some time ago because we thought he was an important witness,” Engelmann said. “He’s always been able, of course, to come here and testify and get out of jail by doing that.”
There were also fears that other witnesses would similarly refuse to testify if there were no consequences.
Inside the courtroom on Thursday, testimony continued from former bishop Eugene Larocque, who as head of the diocese approved the payment to the altar boy.
Larocque also admitted he knew of the abuse allegations against his priests and even lobbied to have a priest, who had been convicted of sodomizing two teenagers, brought into his diocese at the request of another priest.
During questioning on Thursday, Laroque agreed that the response of the diocese to the sexual-abuse allegations against young people “could have been better.” He is to spend one more day on the stand.
papabear1999 wrote :Posted 2008/08/29 at 3:20 PM ET
He should have been out already (criminals get out a lot earlier) so he may be an idiot, an obsesive guy, an attention grabber, a saint or whatever else people can say about the guy, he should still have been released by now. He was given a sentence, he’s done the time but somehow, they aren’t releasing him.
What going on? Why is he getting the shaft? Seems like revenge to me and what’s the point? Don’t make the guy out to be a martyr, sent him the hell home already.
WadeThroughIt wrote: Posted 2008/08/29 at 1:35 PM ET
Unreal. Cornwallites just love the excitement, and love to blow things out of proportion. What Dunlop’s supporters choose to ignore is the fact that one of Dunlop’s co-conspirators has admitted under oath that he lied and/or exaggerated his claims. And he wasn’t the only one to lie or exaggerate for attention, and with Dunlop’s promise that they would get money out of the fiasco. Dunlop and his family members were running around Cornwall about 14 years ago telling everyone that they would be paid very generously by the Government for all the research they were doing, and so on. So, what is his motivation?? Dunlop has turned this into a drama that it needn’t be. The focus should be on the ACTUAL victims, not on those that lied, and especially not on Dunlop and his wife (what exactly does she have to do with this?). Sad that no one has the balls to say that aloud. It’s not all about you, Perry.
As an aside, I remember a time when I couldn’t go to a grocery store in Cornwall without being accosted by Dunlop supporters plugging some “bill” to protect children. They were going to pass their “bill” at City Hall. Again, proving their ignorance about how our legislative process works. Idiots.
YouPeopleAreNuts wrote: Posted 2008/08/29 at 11:54 AM ET
There really is no crazier group out there than the Perry Dunlop fan club. Perry may have had good intentions when he originally “blew the whistle” but his decision to blame anyone he thought didn’t agree with his witch hunt has ruined the lives of a number of people who are NOT pedophiles. This is MORE of an injustice than Perry choosing to spend six months in jail. He and his wife have certainly made this inquiry all about THEM. I’m sure they’re looking for a pay day (what ever happened to their hundred million dollar law suit?) or AT LEAST more TV time.
And one more thing: enough with the “sodomites” signs at your protests! “Pedophiles” and “sodomites” are not the same thing. You are just highlighting your own ignorance. As if it isn’t already obvious.
Recommend this comment Recommend this comment Report abuse
Robar713 wrote: Posted 2008/08/28 at 7:37 PM ET
Dunlop provided the Cornwall Inquiry his will say statement that was produced over a 4 month period some 16 years ago. Events were fresh in his mind at that time. He also testified in a number of court cases. Although all he wanted to do was to protect children, he was badgered by the lawyers and the judges. He does not want to go through this process again. Although promised that he would not be forced to testify at the Inquiry, the legal establishment lied to him and poor legal advice in BC caused him to come to Cornwall and that then put him under the jurisdiction of Ontario law. He is now being subjected to coercion to force him to testify by being moved from jail to jail in Ontario before his next court date in Toronto on September 3.
One who reads the entirety of this Inquiry’s testimony will soon come to the conclusion that Dunlop was to become the sacificial lamb and the cover up would continue. Most people in the know tend to think that “the problems in Cornwall” reaches far in the judiciary, the provincial and federal government.
WHERE IS THE INVESTIGATIVE PRESS ON THIS STORY? IS THE STORY TOO HOT TO HANDLE? CANADIANS AREN’T BEING SERVED BY THEIR JUDICIARY!!! CANADIANS AREN’T BEING SERVED BY THEIR PRESS!!! WHERE CAN THEY TURN TO FOR THE TRUTH?
This Inquiry is costing Ontario taxpayers some 40 million dollars. For this money THEY SHOULD GET THE TRUTH. Its not happening.
Dunlop is living proof that Ontarians should be scared of their justice system. It happened to him and it can happen to you. At present this Inquiry is proof that there is no justice in Ontario. Ontarians need to ensure that a new government will revitalize this system and ensure that a level of trust in the administration of Ontario laws is re-instated.
This Inquiry is continuing the cover up. Cornwall deserves better and it deserves it NOW.
10People recommended this comment 10Recommend this comment Report abuse
PITYME wrote: Posted 2008/08/28 at 6:01 PM ET
Now that all of Canada is watching, he’s sitting silently in his jail cell.
It just makes me wonder, who is he trying to protect by not talking? It doesn’t make sense that he tried so hard earlier to bring this out to the public and now he just wants it to go away.