CHICAGO – On May 23, 2023 Illinois Attorney General Kwame Raoul released the findings of a multi-year investigation into child sex abuse by members of the Catholic clergy in Illinois. In the explosive report, the Attorney General identified 451 substantiated abusers in Illinois between 1950 and 2019, far more than the church had previously admitted.
Imaginary Landscape was engaged by the Illinois Attorney General's office to design the 696 page PDF report as well as build a custom website for the report release.
"This report is so important to the many individuals who were victimized in Illinois and elsewhere," said Brian Moloney, President and CEO of Imaginary Landscape. "We are honored to have played a role in its construction and release, and hope it brings some degree of healing to those who suffered the trauma of abuse."
To accompany the report, Imaginary designed and developed a custom website to present the content in a more accessible way. The website has several features, most notably a sophisticated search engine so that site visitors can search the entire website, including the database of abusers and the narratives of their abuse.
Beyond the numbers, charts and background information presented, the report contains first-person narratives. These detailed accounts of abuse and manipulation are heart-wrenching.
"On every page of the website there is a section that rotates through abusers and narratives," Moloney continued. "It was important to us that abusers were broadcast throughout the site, so that there was no place to hide."
Throughout the project, Imaginary worked closely with the investigative and IT team at the Attorney General's offices in Chicago and Springfield.
"Imaginary was instrumental in our ability to present these findings by producing a world-class report and website," said Thomas Verticchio, Assistant Chief Deputy Attorney General. "Beyond their considerable technical skills, they were incredibly responsive to our needs and continually delivered on difficult deadlines. If I needed something changed, I was able to call them - day or night - and they always answered and always delivered."
The report and website are located at clergyreport.illinoisattorneygeneral.gov.
A deeper dive into how we designed the report is in our blog.