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This profile was last updated on 4/12/02  and contains information from public web pages.

Flora Mae Hickman

Wrong Flora Mae Hickman?

Pastor

Local Address: Fresno, California, United States
St. John's Cathedral
 
Background

Employment History

  • Another Priest
    San Bernardino Diocese
  • Student
    San Joaquin Memorial Catholic High School
  • Catholic school

Board Memberships and Affiliations

  • Member

Education

  • San Joaquin Memorial Catholic High School
61 Total References
Web References
SignOnSanDiego.com > News > State/The West -- Police clear Cardinal Mahony of sex abuse claim by Fresno woman
www.uniontrib.com, 12 April 2002 [cached]
Lt. Dwayne Johnson said Thursday that no physical evidence or witnesses could be found to support the allegation made last month by Flora Mae Hickman, who said she was diagnosed as a paranoid schizophrenic.
Hickman, 51, of Fresno, claimed that Mahony sexually assaulted her when she was a student at San Joaquin Memorial Catholic High School in 1969.
Defense says women not credible; prosecution says priest abused position San Francisco district attorney asks archdiocese for records linked to sexual abuse Orange diocese says priest accused of abuse was sent from Milwaukee
...
Hickman said she was knocked unconscious while fighting with students and woke to find her skirt and panties removed and Mahony, then a monsignor in Fresno, "over her."
Police interviewed teachers who worked at the Catholic school at the time, sought any documents supporting the woman's claims and considered her credibility.
"In this case, we had no evidence," Johnson said."Of course we're going back 32 years.That makes it difficult.A victim's ability to recall can present some unique difficulties."
Hickman's claims were murky and numerous.
...
Hickman went to Fresno church officials with her allegation on March 20, several weeks after news stories began reporting on Mahony's refusal to name a number of priests involved in past abuse cases but who were only recently dismissed from the Los Angeles archdiocese.
Mahony revealed that he was the target of the Hickman accusation on April 5, after a Los Angeles radio station obtained and broadcast some of the cardinal's internal e-mail traffic that referred to her claim.Mahony denied the allegation and saw to it that the claim was reported to police.
Through a spokesman, Mahony said he was grateful to Fresno police for their investigation and was pleased with the result.
Hickman insisted the incident happened, but said Thursday she would not pursue the case.She said two boys were witnesses, but she didn't know their names and wasn't going to try tracking them down.
"I told the story, what I believed," she told The Associated Press."I wouldn't have made it up.Maybe if I'd come out a long time ago, maybe something would have been done."
She said she was "a little upset" with the church but not bitter.She said she planned to return to the church after a four-month hiatus that was due to health problems.
...
Hickman said she had been looking for compensation to cover her psychiatric bills.She filed for bankruptcy two years ago and said her disability payments were cut.
The AP does not normally identify alleged victims in sexual assault cases, but Hickman gave permission to use her name.
She originally told her story to the pastor of St. John's Cathedral in Fresno on March 20.He reported it to police, but later said he doubted the allegation was true.
"She claimed that happened with 40 different youths watching," said Monsignor John Esquivel."There's no way that is going to happen in front of all those people."
Mahony, 66, became the head of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles in 1985 and was elevated to cardinal in 1991.
CBS News | Claim Against L.A. Cardinal Dismissed | April 12, 2002 02:11:42
www.cbsnews.com, 11 April 2002 [cached]
Lt. Dwayne Johnson said there was no physical evidence or witnesses to support the allegation made last month by Flora Mae Hickman, who said she was diagnosed as a paranoid schizophrenic.
Hickman, 51, of Fresno, said Mahony sexually assaulted her when she was a student at San Joaquin Memorial Catholic High School in 1969.
Hickman said she was knocked unconscious while fighting with students and woke to find her bottom garment removed and Mahony, then a monsignor in Fresno, "over her."
Police interviewed teachers who worked at the Catholic school at the time, sought any documents supporting the woman's claims and considered her credibility.
...
Hickman insisted the incident happened, but said she would not pursue the case.
She originally told her story to the pastor of St. John's Cathedral in Fresno on March 20.He reported it to police, but later said he doubted the allegation was true.
"She claimed that happened with 40 different youths watching," said Monsignor John Esquivel."There's no way that is going to happen in front of all those people."
Mahony, 66, became the head of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles in 1985 and was elevated to Cardinal in 1991. ©MMII The Associated Press.All Rights Reserved.
Six New York Priests Suspended (washingtonpost.com)
www.washingtonpost.com, 8 April 2002 [cached]
Flora Mae Hickman, 51, of Fresno, alleges she was molested by Mahony while a student at San Joaquin Memorial Catholic High School in 1969.After leading Sunday Mass at St. John's Cathedral in Fresno, Calif., Monsignor John Esquivel said, "I don't believe the allegations are true."
Hickman said she has been diagnosed as a paranoid schizophrenic and is taking medication for depression.She told The Associated Press that she was knocked unconscious while fighting with students and woke to find the "bottom" portion of her clothing removed and Mahony, then a monsignor in Fresno, "over her."
Hickman said she could not remember many details of what happened.She has not alleged that Mahony touched her.
"She claimed that happened with 40 different youths watching.There's no way that is going to happen in front of all those people," Esquivel said.
Hickman went to Esquivel with the allegations last month.The Fresno Police Department is investigating, and Mahony said he was cooperating.Mahony revealed the accusation Friday night and denied it.
The AP does not normally identify alleged victims in sexual assault cases, but Hickman gave permission for her name to be used.
In other developments:
– The Rev. Ponciano Ramos, a priest in the San Bernardino Diocese, has resigned after admitting he attacked boys several years ago.Ramos was charged with child molestation for allegedly fondling three boys in Indianapolis in 1992, but pleaded guilty to lesser charges of battery and received an 18-month suspended sentence, the Chicago Tribune reported Sunday.
The Boston Globe reported Sunday that another priest in the San Bernardino Diocese was transferred from Boston in 1990 even though he had faced decades of sexual abuse complaints.
A lawsuit alleges the Rev. Paul R. Shanley, 71, repeatedly raped a boy during the 1980s when he was pastor of a church in Newton, Mass.The molestation allegedly started when the boy was six and continued until he was 11.
L.A. cardinal's accuser vague Probe of cardinal confirmed
www.suntimes.com, 7 April 2002 [cached]
Flora Mae Hickman, 51, of Fresno, claims she was molested by Mahony while she was a student at San Joaquin Memorial Catholic High School in 1969.But contacted Saturday, Hickman said she couldn't remember what happened during the alleged incident.
Hickman told the Associated Press she was knocked unconscious while fighting with students and woke to find the "bottom" portion of her clothing removed and Mahony, then a monsignor in Fresno, "over her."
Hickman also said she is taking medication for depression and has been told by a psychiatrist that she is a paranoid schizophrenic.
The AP usually does not identify alleged victims in sexual assault cases, but Hickman gave permission for her name to be used.Her name also was included in Mahony's statement.
"My personal integrity and reputation demand that I take all possible steps to refute this false allegation," Mahony said.
He issued the statement after a Los Angeles radio station obtained and quoted from church e-mails about abuse cases that refer briefly to Hickman's claim, which she first made to the pastor of St. John's Cathedral in Fresno on March 20.
The internal e-mails Mahony wrote during the last two weeks reveal his concerns over the church's response to sexual abuse allegations in the archdiocese, which serves 5 million Catholics in three Southern California counties.
Los Angeles police have said they are investigating reports that the diocese has removed six to 12 priests accused of sexual abuse in cases dating as far back as 10 years.
Despite saying she could not remember details, Hickman insisted Saturday that the charges are true and that the incident caused her to lose her faith.
"I'm not making this up.I know this is a serious allegation.
...
Hickman also told of another incident involving Mahony during which she claims he hit her.Both incidents took place between 1969 and when she graduated in 1970, Hickman said.
A 1970 San Joaquin Memorial Catholic High School yearbook contains a photo of Hickman, confirming she was a member of the graduating class that year.
Mahony, 66, became the head of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles in 1985 and was elevated to cardinal in 1991.
In 1993, Cardinal Joseph Bernardin of Chicago faced a molestation accusation that was later recanted.
FindLaw Legal News
news.findlaw.com, 12 April 2002 [cached]
Lt. Dwayne Johnson said there was no physical evidence or witnesses to support the allegation made last month by Flora Mae Hickman, who said she had been diagnosed as a paranoid schizophrenic.
Hickman, 51, said Mahony sexually assaulted her when she was a student at San Joaquin Memorial Catholic High School in 1969.Mahony was then a monsignor in Fresno.
As head of the nation's largest Roman Catholic diocese, Mahony was the highest church official to be accused in the sex abuse scandal that has shaken the church.
Mahony revealed the Hickman accusation April 5, and denied it.
...
Hickman insisted Thursday that the incident happened, but said she would not pursue the case.
"I told the story, what I believed," she said."I wouldn't have made it up.Maybe if I'd come out a long time ago, maybe something would have been done."
She said she was looking for compensation to cover her psychiatric bills.She filed for bankruptcy two years ago and said her disability payments were cut.
...
Hickman had claimed she was knocked unconscious while fighting with students and woke to find her bottom garment removed and Mahony "over her."
Police interviewed teachers who worked at the Catholic school, sought any documents supporting the woman's claims and considered her credibility.
"In this case, we had no evidence," Johnson said Thursday."Of course we're going back 32 years.That makes it difficult.A victim's ability to recall can present some unique difficulties."
Hickman's claims were vague.
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