CONROE, Texas — Conroe police had to pick the lock on a "bank vault" to access files that the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston had not handed over to detectives, according to court documents.
Detective Joe McGrew said in a warrant that his agency was investigating sex assault allegations involving a "specific priest," but that the diocese had not turned over all their documents regarding the priest.
Meanwhile, Dallas Bishop Edward Burns has brushed aside statements in a police affidavit that his diocese stymied efforts to obtain files about clerical abuse, saying church officials are being as transparent as possible.
Burns responded at a press conference to sworn statements from a city police investigator.
Detective David Clark wrote in an affidavit supporting the search warrants executed Wednesday that priests and lawyers for the church gave him incomplete and inaccurate records. Clark wrote that his efforts to obtain some material about the alleged sexual abuse of children were "thwarted."
Burns says he is confident that he and the diocese "are doing this right" and are "doing everything possible to create a safe environment."
The bishop says a retired FBI agent who the diocese brought in to review its files told him the affidavit and search warrants were rife with errors. He did not name the former agent.