Widow of Priest Abuse Victim Blames Church for His Suicide
By Ashley Ludwig
March 15, 2017
A widow has alleged her 50-year-old husband committed suicide due to depression suffered from being molested by a priest years earlier in Placentia. Now, she has taken his case to court, filing the lawsuit in Los Angeles Superior Court, on be half of herself and her four children, suing the archdioceses of Los Angeles and Orange.
Robin Ward Agrusa alleged wrongful death and negligence and naming St. Joseph Catholic Church and St. Joseph Catholic School as additional defendants.
Representative of the two archdioceses could not be immediately reached.
The suit states that Mark Paul Agrusa was born into a family of devout Catholics and attended St. Joseph's Church and its school from 1974-78.
During that time, he met the Rev. Eleuterio Ramos, who "set his sights on Mark's youthful vulnerability," the suit alleges.
Agrusa became an altar boy and served sacraments during Mass with Ramos, who began sexually molesting him and warned him not to tell anyone, the suit alleges.
Ramos, abusing his role as a priest and mentor, "entrapped Mark in his web of sadistic abuse while simultaneously alienating Mark from his family and support system," the suit states.
Agrusa carried with him a sense of violation and guilt "until he could not do so any longer" and killed himself on March 16, 2015, the suit states.
Ramos was ordained by the Archdiocese of Los Angeles and had already admitted to that body that he had molested one or more boys before he was sent to St. Joseph's in Orange County, according to the lawsuit.
City News Service contributed to this report.