Sexual Abuse Victims Bring Lawsuits Against St. Cloud Diocese [VIDEO]
By Alex Svejkovsky
August 25, 2015
ST. CLOUD — Two women who were sexually abused as minors by a priest, have filed lawsuits against the St. Cloud Diocese.
The two cases were filed this (Tuesday) morning under the Child Victims Act.
Attorney Jeff Anderson says the lawsuit states the women were abused by Father Donald Rieder, at different churches in the 1960s when they were between the ages of 11 and 15.
“We have evidence there were reports of Rieder prior to these two victims and that he continued to abuse girls in the 1960s, 70s, 80s and 90s,” says Anderson.
During his 40 years as a priest, Rieder work at parishes in Alexandria, Randall, Kimball, Morris, Roscoe, Paynesville, Little Falls, Sobieski and St. Cloud.
Susan Fuchs-Hoeschen is a third party who filed a sexual abuse suit against Rieder over 20 years ago. She says she felt she needed to be brave about her story so others would tell theirs.
“In the 1990s after Father Porter made the news I brought my case to the diocese and was promised he would be removed and this would not continue,” says Fuchs-Hoeschen.
Anderson says the lawsuit urges the bishop to take action on this matter and release concealed information about Rieder and others in the Church.
“We want all the files of the offenders to be disclosed to the public so we can know what the past has been and so children will be safer in the future,” says Anderson.
Fuchs-Hoeschen hopes by coming forward other victims will do the same and know they are not alone.
“If you’re hiding, alone or feel like you’ll never be heard now is the time to come forward,” says Fuchs-Hoeschen.
In 2003 Rieder pled guilty to abusing a young girl in the 1990s and admitted to abusing others over his career as a Catholic Priest.
The Diocese of St. Cloud released a statement today saying the diocese has not had a chance to review the complaints and cannot comment at this time.