WMAR Coverage of "Recovered Memory" Hearing in 1995

Posted at 6:44 PM, May 25, 2017
and last updated 2017-05-26 05:48:17-04

The Netflix documentary “The Keepers” features interviews with women who say they were sexually abused at Archbishop Keough High School.

Two of those women first came forward back in 1994.  At the time, they were identified only as “Jane Doe” and “Jane Roe.”  They sued the chaplain from Archbishop Keough, Father Joseph Maskell, along with the Archdiocese of Baltimore, the School Sisters of Notre Dame (who operated the school) and a Baltimore gynecologist.  The women were seeking $40 million.

RELATED: Director of "The Keepers" talks with ABC-2 News about the documentary

On May 1, 1995, the women appeared in a Baltimore City courtroom, and testified about the abuse they say they’d suffered.

WMAR -- then known as "Newschannel 2" covered that hearing; a portion of the coverage was used in the Netflix documentary "The Keepers."  We've included the full story from former WMAR reporter Amy Landsman above, and her full script form the news story that ran that evening is below:


The women, identified in court as Jane Roe and Jane Doe were students at Archbishop Keough High School in the 1960s and 1970s.

Both claim they were raped and abused by Father Joseph Maskell.

In testimony today, the first woman (referring to Jane Roe) claimed that she never forgot much of the abuse, in fact, she says for years she told numerous people that Father Maskell was, in her words, a pervert.  But she remained too afraid of him to go to court. However, she says she recently remembered new instances of abuse that she had repressed.

The second woman (referring to Jane Doe) testified that she had forgotten all of the abuse until recently. Their attorney explained why they didn't remember:  "They simply suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder as a result of the traumas that were inflicted upon them. And one of the component elements of that is an inability to recall the traumatic events,” said the womens’ attorney

Amy Landsman standup - "The new memories are really key here.  That's because the statute of limitations on alleged assaults that occurred more than 20 years ago has long since expired.  But if the judge accepts that the women only recently remembered other instances of abuse, he could clear the way for the case to go to trial."

"If this case go to trial, each and every one of those witnesses will be subjected to investigation and rigorous cross-examination. The credibility of their story will be very much at issue in the event that the case goes to trial," said attorney Michael Lehane, who represented Father Maskell in the 1995 case.

Father Maskell, who was not in court, has denied the charges.

In Baltimore, Amy Landsman, Newschannel 2


Four days later, the judge overseeing the case, Hilary Caplan, ruled Jane Doe and Jane Roe’s recovered memories could not “restart” the statute of limitations.