|Catholic Diocese of Savannah Reaches $4.24 Million Settlement with Alleged Victim
By Dana Clark Felty
Savannah Morning News
October 28, 2009
Bishop J. Kevin Boland apologizes for 'pain and suffering' of former St. James student
The Catholic Diocese of Savannah announced today it has reached a $4.24 million settlement with a 40-year-old man who says he was sexually abused by a former priest.
In a civil suit filed in 2008 in Jasper County, S.C., Savannah native Allan Ranta claimed he was molested by former priest Wayland Y. Brown from 1978 to 1983. Ranta, who was 10 to 14 years old and a student at St. James Catholic School at the time of the alleged abuse, claimed the Diocese ignored signs Brown posed a danger to children.
In 2003, Brown was convicted in the sexual abuse of two Maryland boys, ages 12 and 13, nearly 30 years earlier. He was released from prison in April, 2008, after serving half of his sentence and was on parole in the Baltimore area.
The Diocese issued an announcement Wednesday afternoon saying the $4.24 million settlement brings Ranta's claims against the diocese to a close. The Diocese decision to settle was to avoid the expense and burden of a lengthy trial by all parties.
The announcement quotes diocesan Bishop J. Kevin Boland: I am sorry for all the pain and suffering experienced by Mr. Ranta and my prayers go out not only to him, but to all victims of child sexual abuse that each may find the healing they seek.
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