Sin, Shame & Secrets

  • by David Yonke
  • Narrated by Dave Clark
  • 9 hrs and 33 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

In this unique and compelling true-crime story, journalist and author David Yonke presents and analyzes the only case in US history in which a Roman Catholic priest was arrested for the murder of a nun. Father Gerald Robinson of Toledo, whom friends and associates described as a timid and mild-mannered man, was arrested by cold-case detectives in April, 2004, and charged in the brutal slaying of Sister Margaret Ann Pahl 24 years earlier. The 71-year-old nun had been choked to the edge of death, covered with an altar cloth, and stabbed 31 times in the face, neck, and chest. Her body was found in the sacristy of a Catholic hospital, her habit pulled up to her chest and her undergarments around her ankles. It was Holy Saturday morning, 1980, the day before Easter and the day before the victim's 72nd birthday. Cold-case investigators said the first nine stab wounds, made over the nun's heart, were in the shape of an upside down cross, one of many signs that Sister Margaret Ann was the victim of a ritual killing. "Sin, Shame & Secrets" unveils how cold-case investigators decided to reopen the case in 2003 after a Toledo nun testified that Father Robinson abused her in satanic rituals when she was a child. The nun's testimony before the Toledo Catholic Diocese's Review Board also alleged that a number of children had been killed by the cult. A lengthy police investigation followed, resulting in Robinson's arrest at age 66 on April 23, 2004. After a three-week trial, covered gavel-to-gavel by Court TV (now truTV), the priest was convicted of murder on May 11, 2006, and sentenced to 15 years to life in prison. Yonke, the award-winning former Religion Editor and reporter at The Toledo Blade, reviewed hundreds of police files, interviewed dozens of principles, and covered every minute of the trial to give listeners a thorough and examined look at events as they unfolded, as well as providing background information for the story and the people

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Wow, just bad.

There are just no words to describe how bad this book is. It's all taken from the court and newspaper article however too much emphasis was put on recalled memories of satanic rituals done to a nun as young as two years old. Such claims of recovered memories have been proven false and implanted by psychologists to people who struggle with mental illness. No speculation was provided about the priest innocence nor were other suspects investigated. Overall, extremely disappointing book and barely kept my attention.
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- Misty

Wandering, off topic, unbelievable, manipulative

Any additional comments?

A good portion of the book has nothing to do with the murder but goes on and on about sexual depravity of priests and completely unbelievable stories of "repressed memories" of satanic mass murder and ritualistic sex abuse by family, priests and just about everyone else. The author took advantage of an obviously mentally disturbed woman to go off on a tangent that had nothing to do with the murder.

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- Troy J.

Book Details

  • Release Date: 06-01-2015
  • Publisher: David Yonke