The Maine State Police investigation of Robert Carlson was a valuable public service, but I think the case was closed too soon.

Carlson committed his crimes over many years, deceiving the mighty and exploiting the weak; there were surely more victims than we know.

Thanks to a newspaper story in January, it is also clear that Carlson was no reverend but a con man masquerading as a clergyman.

No one seems to know where he came from or how he rose to prominence in Maine, but we need to find out all we can before his cold trail disappears.

Above all, we don’t want another one like him. The best defense lies in revealing the whole sorry story, finding out, if we can, how a young man with fake credentials became the chief mental advocate of Maine; untangling the trail of bank accounts with which Carlson kept his victims hooked; discovering how many children he damaged; what those closest to him knew; whether he had confederates who may still be at large.

It would be a grave mistake not to fathom this tragedy to its depths. The task will be legally complex and expensive, and it’s going to hurt, but preventing the rise of another Carlson will make the job worthwhile.

Clint Grubbs

Augusta

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