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Mormon Church Wants 1984 Rape Case Against Leader Tossed Out

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints' Salt Lake Temple.
Wikimedia Commons
Salt Lake City LDS Temple

The Mormon church is asking a judge to toss out a lawsuit accusing leaders of brushing aside rape allegations against a former missionary training center director.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints says in court documents filed Tuesday that many people who could have testified about what happened in 1984 have died or are left with only cloudy memories, leaving the faith unable to fully defend itself.

The woman has said she reported several times over the last three decades that Joseph L. Bishop sexually assaulted her, but the church failed to take disciplinary action.

Bishop has denied raping her but acknowledged to police that he asked her to expose herself when he was president of the faith's Missionary Training Center in Provo, Utah. His lawyers also say the suit should be dismissed because it's too old.