|New Accusations against Priest Convicted of Sexual Abuse
By Libby Sander
August 22, 2007
Chicago, Aug. 21 — A Jesuit priest convicted last year of sexually abusing two teenage boys about 40 years ago is facing new accusations of abuse.
Though the original charges against the priest, the Rev. Donald J. McGuire, date from the late 1960s, the new accusations, in a civil lawsuit filed Tuesday in Cook County Circuit Court, describe abuse that occurred from 1999 to 2003.
The lawsuit says Father McGuire, who is 77, abused the plaintiff, known as John Doe 116, who was 13 when he first came to stay with Father McGuire at a Jesuit residence in Evanston, Ill. It also states that Father McGuire sexually abused the boy in 13 states and 6 foreign countries.
The suit also names the local Jesuits, formally known as the Chicago Province of the Society of Jesus, as defendants, saying that Jesuit officials "knew or should reasonably have known" of Father McGuire's behavior and failed to supervise him accordingly.
Lawyers for the plaintiff also say the Jesuits failed to report Father McGuire to local law enforcement authorities when first notified of the accusations in January 2007.
But a spokesman for the Jesuits in Chicago said Tuesday that Jesuit officials had notified the chief prosecutor of the county's sex crimes division within a week of learning of the man's claims against Father McGuire.
"When a complaint is lodged in any shape or form, we care for the individual as quickly as possible, and in this case we feel we've done that," the spokesman, Jeremy Langford, said.
A spokeswoman for the Cook County state's attorney's office, Tandra Simonton, said, however, that the prosecutor learned of the accusations for the first time on Tuesday. Prosecutors are reviewing the information, Ms. Simonton said.
The suit says the relationship between Father McGuire and the plaintiff ended in 2003, when civil complaints were filed against the priest by two men who said they had been sexually abused by him in the late 1960s, when both were students at a Jesuit high school near Chicago where Father McGuire taught.
Criminal charges followed in Wisconsin in 2005, and in 2006 Father McGuire was convicted of five counts of indecent behavior with a child stemming from abuse of the two boys that took place during trips to Wisconsin in the late 1960s. (His name was dropped from the civil suit once criminal charges were brought. The civil suit against the Jesuits was settled earlier this year.)
Father McGuire was sentenced to two concurrent seven-year prison terms for the criminal convictions, which have been postponed pending his appeal. He is serving a 20-year probation sentence.
Since 2003, Father McGuire has been removed from active ministry and is no longer permitted to function as a priest, Mr. Langford said. He is a registered sex offender and lives in a suburb south of Chicago.
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