BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Netflix has announced that it will release a seven-part documentary series called “The Keepers” next month, which will explore the unsolved murder of Baltimore nun Sister Cathy Cesnik.
Sister Cathy, who was 26 when she died, taught at Southwest Baltimore’s Archbishop Keough High School.
In the 60s and 70s, Father Joseph Maskell, a counselor at the school, was accused of molesting dozens of students — mostly women.
A WJZ investigation revealed many of those victims confided in Sister Cathy just before her shocking murder nearly 50 years ago.
She was reported missing on November 7, 1969, and her decomposed body was discovered in January 1970.
“She confronted him and she lost her life for it,” Teresa Lancaster, one of Father Joseph Maskell’s alleged victims, told WJZ’s Denise Koch.
Father Maskell died in 2001.
According to a Netflix press release, Ryan White directed the series, which will be released on the streaming service on May 19.
“Through conversations with dozens of friends, relatives, journalists, government officials and Baltimore citizens determined to uncover the truth, White pieces together a story that goes beyond the death of a beloved Catholic schoolteacher to encompass clergy abuse, repressed memories and government and religious institutions that he says ‘at best, dropped the ball over the last 45 years – and, at worst, covered it up,'” a Netflix press release says.
Lancaster told WJZ police officers were involved in the abuse, as well.
“Father Maskell picked me up, took me to a wooded area where there was a lot of policemen gathered around, he left me in the backseat and two policemen abused me while Maskell stood next to the car,” she told WJZ’s Denise Koch. “Maskell was a police chaplain and he knew people in high places—that’s how they got away with it. They scared the living hell out of us.”
In November, the Archdiocese of Baltimore paid a series of settlements to Father Maskell’s alleged victims.
Read more about WJZ’s investigation into Sister Cathy’s death and the abuse allegations against Father Maskell HERE.