Savannah Catholic Diocese Named in Lawsuit on Sex Abuse


By: JoAnn Merrigan | WSAV-TV
Published: February 27, 2012

(Savannah, GA) The Catholic Diocese of Savannah is being named in a lawsuit alleging sexual abuse by a former priest. The Diocese website confirms the suit was filed in Jasper County, South Carolina.

Accordinging to the website, the suit alleges sexual abuse of a minor over 25 years ago by father Wayland Y. Brown. The Diocese, Raymond W. Lessard, bishop at the time, and current Bishop Gregory J. Hartmayer are named as defendants.

According to the Diocese: Bishop Lessard removed Brown from active ministry in 1988. In 2003, Brown was convicted in Maryland on charges of child molestation. He served five years of a 10-year sentence. In 2004 a decree from the Vatican imposed laicization upon Brown. (reduced to lay status.)

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