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SUPERIOR COURT OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA

FOR THE COUNTY OF LOS ANGELES, CENTRAL DISTRICT

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Coordination Proceeding )
Special Title (Rule 155(b)), )
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) Case No. JCCP 4286
In Re: )
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THE CLERGY CASES I )
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VIDEOTAPED DEPOSITION OF FATHER MICHAEL LENIHAN

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA

JULY 12, 2005

Reported by Randy D. Garrett, CSR 8931, RPR


PRS Job No. 34-274123
11:59:35 1 region, which took in 65, 70 parishes.

11:59:45 2 Q What region was your deanery part of?

11:59:48 3 A San Pedro.

11:59:52 4 Q Was there a leader of that region while

11:59:54 5 you've been in it?

11:59:55 6 A Well, the leader was the archbishop and

12:00:02 7 then he had the regional bishops.

12:00:06 8 Q In your time in the South Bay who has been

12:00:09 9 the regional bishops?

12:00:12 10 A Bishop Cardinal Fisher, bless his soul,

12:00:15 11 and Bishop Joseph Torres and the present young man,

12:00:19 12 as I'm retired now, who came in last November.

12:00:24 13 Q What's his name?

12:00:26 14 A Bishop Alex.

12:00:33 15 Q Were any complaints about priest conduct

12:00:35 16 ever voiced at deanery meetings?

12:00:37 17 A Never.

12:00:40 18 Q As a -- were you a Vicar Foraine when you

12:00:46 19 were a deanery rep? What was the title you had?

12:00:49 20 A A dean is the correct one is a Vicar

12:00:53 21 Foraine, yes, but you can laugh at that.

12:00:57 22 Q Why would I laugh at that?

12:01:00 23 A That there was rain.

12:01:02 24 Q So as a dean did you ever receive any

12:01:05 25 complaints about priest conduct?

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12:01:07 1 A Never.

12:01:07 2 Q From, regarding any priest?

12:01:09 3 A Never. That was not a part of the

12:01:14 4 position.

12:01:17 5 Q Did you ever receive communications from

12:01:20 6 the chancery office regarding any priests within

12:01:25 7 your deanery?

12:01:26 8 A Never.

12:01:29 9 MR. GODFREY: Monsignor, please let him

12:01:30 10 finish the question.

12:01:31 11 MR. DEMARCO: I'll ask the question

12:01:32 12 slightly different. It might make it a little

12:01:34 13 easier.

12:01:36 14 Q As dean did you ever receive any

12:01:37 15 communications from the chancery office regarding

12:01:39 16 any particular priests in your deanery?

12:01:41 17 A Not that I can recall. I see no reason.

12:01:45 18 Why would I?

12:01:48 19 Q You mentioned you were on the personnel

12:01:49 20 board for three, four years approximately.

12:01:52 21 A Uh-huh.

12:01:53 22 Q And what was your function on the

12:01:56 23 personnel board?

12:01:57 24 A I was a member of the personnel board, and

12:02:01 25 as a member your positions came up or opinions as

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14:47:42 1 you believe regarded you as a mentor?

14:47:44 2 A I cannot recall.

14:47:49 3 Q I think at St. Columbkille or is it Justin

14:47:56 4 Martyr or Lawrence martyr?

14:47:59 5 A Lawrence Martyr.

14:48:00 6 Q I apologize. At Lawrence Martyr was there

14:48:03 7 a priest by the name of Dennis Morel assigned with

14:48:07 8 you?

14:48:08 9 A Yes, there was.

14:48:09 10 Q Is he still living.

14:48:10 11 A Oh, yes, he's still living.

14:48:12 12 Q Do you know if he's still a priest?

14:48:15 13 A As far as I know.

14:48:15 14 Q In L.A. in the archdiocese?

14:48:20 15 A I don't know whether he's living now. I

14:48:22 16 do not know.

14:48:23 17 Q Was there a permanent deacon by the name

14:48:25 18 of Frank Dieter?

14:48:27 19 A There is.

14:48:29 20 Q Is he still a deacon?

14:48:30 21 A Yes.

14:48:37 22 Q Other than attorneys for the archdiocese,

14:48:39 23 has anybody -- and aside from us asking you today

14:48:43 24 at the deposition, has anyone ever before asked you

14:48:45 25 for what your experiences were with Michael Baker?

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14:48:49 1 A Not that I can recall.

14:48:52 2 Q Again, with the same caveat of not wanting

14:48:55 3 to know what counsel has asked you and without --

14:48:56 4 and not the questions here, has anyone ever asked

14:49:01 5 you your opinions of Michael Baker?

14:49:03 6 A Not that I can recall.

14:49:07 7 Q When's the last time you spoke with him?

14:49:14 8 A Again, within the last six months.

14:49:27 9 Q How frequently have you spoken with him

14:49:30 10 over the years?

14:49:32 11 A Oh, two or three times a year average.

14:49:37 12 Q A year?

14:49:38 13 A Maybe, average.

14:49:40 14 Q Just, I want to make sure I'm correct.

14:49:42 15 Did you say average two, three times a year?

14:49:45 16 A A year, yeah.

14:49:46 17 Q Throughout the years?

14:49:52 18 A No, not that often. I would say -- come

14:49:54 19 to think of it, I would take back that answer and

14:50:00 20 say less than that. If I average once a year.

14:50:09 21 Q Any particular times of year you speak

14:50:11 22 with him normally?

14:50:12 23 A No.

14:50:13 24 Q Just --

14:50:14 25 A Any time.

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14:50:15 1 Q What's the nature of the calls or the

14:50:16 2 nature of the conversations? What do you talk

14:50:20 3 about?

14:50:22 4 A I cannot recall. And it may just be

14:50:30 5 general conversation, what's he doing and, you

14:50:34 6 know, how's he getting along and all of this and,

14:50:38 7 you know.

14:50:39 8 Q What is he doing these days for work?

14:50:43 9 A I do not know really.

14:50:47 10 Q Six months ago when you spoke to him, do

14:50:48 11 you recall him saying what he was doing for work?

14:50:52 12 A I do not know. No, I don't know if he was

14:50:56 13 even working.

14:50:59 14 Q Have you kept up these regular

14:51:02 15 communications ever since he served as a

14:51:04 16 transitional deacon?

14:51:12 17 A Other than being, you know, an average of

14:51:18 18 once a year, we might get together for lunch or

14:51:21 19 something like that. That would be it.

14:51:23 20 Q Ever since he was a transitional deacon?

14:51:26 21 A Not really. I'm sure there were years we

14:51:28 22 missed.

14:51:28 23 Q Were there years where you spoke more than

14:51:31 24 once a year?

14:51:32 25 A Again I cannot recall the exact, you know.

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14:51:43 1 Q Have you ever spoken with Michael Baker

14:51:44 2 about these allegations against him?

14:51:46 3 A Never.

14:51:46 4 Q Why not?

14:51:49 5 A None of my business.

14:51:50 6 Q He was a priest.

14:51:52 7 A None of my business. I'm not any superior

14:51:54 8 of his or anything like that. Never spoke to him

14:51:59 9 about it. If I was in a position of

14:52:05 10 responsibility, maybe yes, but I've never never

14:52:08 11 discussed the subject with him.

14:52:11 12 Q Has he ever volunteered information about

14:52:13 13 it?

14:52:13 14 A Never. No reason.

14:52:22 15 Q Did you know a Father James Hanson?

14:52:27 16 A Again, I knew of him. There's a

14:52:31 17 difference between whether you know him, knowing

14:52:34 18 someone, you know.

14:52:35 19 Q Did he ever come by and visit St.

14:52:37 20 Columbkille?

14:52:39 21 A Never did. He had no reason.

14:52:40 22 Q Please make sure you wait until I finish

14:52:43 23 asking the question, Father. We've been going at

14:52:44 24 it a long time and you've been fine, but just so I

14:52:48 25 have the complete record of my question, do you

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1

2 DECLARATION UNDER PENALTY OF PERJURY

4 I, FATHER MICHAEL LENIHAN, do hereby certify

5 under penalty of perjury that I have read the

6 foregoing transcript of my deposition taken on July

7 12, 2005; that I have made such corrections as

8 appear noted herein; that my testimony as contained

9 herein, as corrected, is true and correct.

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11 DATED ______ day of ____________________,

12 2005, at ________________________________,

13 California.

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17 _______________________________

18 FATHER MICHAEL LENIHAN

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1 REPORTER'S CERTIFICATION

3 I, Randy D. Garrett, a Certified Shorthand

4 Reporter in and for the State of California, do

5 hereby certify:

6 That the foregoing witness was by me duly

7 placed under oath; that the deposition was then

8 taken before me at the time and place herein set

9 forth; that the testimony and proceedings were

10 reported stenographically by me and later

11 transcribed into typewriting under my direction;

12 that the foregoing is a true record of the

13 testimony and proceedings taken at that time.

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15 IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have subscribed my

16 name this 25th day of July, 2005.

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20 ________________________________

21 Randy D. Garrett, CSR No. 8931

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