Mike Riva's letter to me dated June 13, 2003, follows. Below
are the first three paragraphs and the closing paragraph of my
reply dated June 20, 2003.
I received your letter dated June 13, 2003, upon my return last
evening from a two week trip out of state. It is my prayer that
you will assist Tommy Shelton in taking measures which will satisfy
his victims, their families and the congregations involved and
serve to bring some closure to him as well as them.
Your letter, particularly the next to last paragraph, serves
better to incite rather than intimidate. Consider the scenario
of three victims pressing charges in an environment of intense
interest from news media with state-wide or national influence.
Any State's Attorney anticipating re-election certainly would
give serious attention to prosecution.
I urge you to counsel Tommy to take the initiative by making
a full disclosure of all victims and details to the Franklin
County Sheriff's Office and by pursuing the additional "Action
Items" enclosed. Doing so would put him in a far better light
and more advantageous position than would circumstances similar
to the scenario contemplated above.
Finally, Mr. Riva, I am disappointed that you did not exercise
due diligence to obtain the name and address of the chairman
of our board of trustees or other board member. Sending a copy
of your letter to one of our parishioners was entirely inappropriate.