Extension Granted for Lawsuits in Friar's Sex-abuse Case
October 31, 2013
Five alleged sex abuse victims of a former athletic trainer at Bishop McCort High School in Johnstown will have more time to negotiate settlements in their cases. Blair County Judge Jolene Kopriva granted attorney Richard Serbin six additional months so file civil lawsuits related to claims of sexual abuse made by his clients against the late Brother Stephen Baker. Baker was a Franciscan friar and a former athletic trainer at Bishop McCort and was the subject of child abuse investigations in Ohio, Minnesota and Pennsylvania, Baker lived at St. Bernadine Monastery in Hollidaysburg when he committed suicide Jan. 26. Serbin asked for the additional time after the Bishop of the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown Mark Bartchak announced earlier in October that the Altoona-Johnstown Diocese wanted to try to settle claims against Baker rather than litigate them. Meanwhile, Bishop McCort is attempting to compel another attorney of three alleged Baker victims to formally file details of their claims against Baker. Stay with 6 News and WJACTV.com for continuing coverage.