|Second Complaint Accuses Local Friar of Sexual Abuse
By Peter Smith
December 7, 2007
A local Franciscan order is investigating a second complaint against a friar recently accused in a lawsuit of sexual abuse.
However, the order hasn't been able to determine whether the two complaints are from the same man or two different men.
Yesterday, advocates for the man accusing Brother Kerry Guillory held a press conference in Louisville and released letters and photos that they said corroborated the lawsuit alleging he provided a teen with alcohol and molested him in the 1970s, when Guillory was stationed in New Mexico.
The developments follow a lawsuit filed Nov. 28 in New Mexico containing the allegations against Guillory, who in recent years managed the Franciscan Shelter House, a social service center in Smoketown.
Guillory was removed from ministry almost immediately after the Franciscans learned of the lawsuit. He is now at a friary where he has no contact with youths, according to Brother Robert Baxter, spokesman for the Province of Our Lady of Consolation, based at Mount St. Francis in Floyds Knobs.
Baxter would not disclose Guillory's location, but said it was not Mount St. Francis.
Baxter said any brother accused of abuse, like any priest, is removed from ministry pending an investigation. If the allegations are verified, he would be removed permanently.
Since the suit was filed, Baxter said the order learned of another complaint. Because the suit was filed under a pseudonym, Baxter said it's unclear if both allegations involve the same person or if there's a second alleged victim.
"Even just to have the allegations, the friars are generally just sick about it," Baxter said. "It's as if one of your brothers was alleged to have done something. It's just devastating. Our hearts go out to the alleged victim."
The lawsuit, filed in Carlsbad, N.M., alleges that in the late 1970s, Guillory provided beer and money for marijuana to the plaintiff and to other teenage boys in New Mexico, and that he molested and sodomized the plaintiff.
Guillory has denied the allegations.
At the press conference yesterday, attorney Kevin McGuire released what he said were photocopies of 1977 letters from Guillory to the plaintiff that he said prove Guillory's "denials are lame."
The lawsuit quotes Guillory in the letters as speaking of the "night of my impulse" and describing himself as someone "who is lonely" and "will do anything to get love."
The letters bear Guillory's name and are signed, but there was no way to verify independently whether they came from Guillory. McGuire also provided photos that he said corroborate allegations that Guillory drank beer with teenagers, but those also could not be verified.
Reporter Peter Smith can be reached at (502) 582-4469 or firstname.lastname@example.org
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