Woman Sues Catholic Church for Abuse

St. Louis Post Dispatch
June 9, 2005

A woman sued the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of St. Louis and Archbishop Raymond Burke on Thursday, alleging that she was abused more than 40 years ago in her parish in St. Paul.

The suit by the woman, identified only as Jane Doe, says that a Roman Catholic priest with the last name Kohnen sexually abused her between 1960 and 1968.

Lawyer Susan Carlson, who is representing the woman, said the priest's full name was Henry J. Kohnen. Kohnen was ordained in 1935 and died in 1983 at the age of 73. He last served as pastor of Assumption Catholic Church in Mattese.

The suit says the church knew that Kohnen was a pedophile, but allowed him to take children on trips and ignored parents' complaints of improprieties. The suit also says the church failed to report the abuse.

A church spokesman could not be reached late Thursday. Church officials typically do not comment on pending litigation.


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