Jeff Anderson & Associates

[the lawsuit]

(Duluth & Brainerd, MN) – Attorneys for a 55-year-old Arizona man filed a lawsuit in St. Louis County today claiming that beginning in the early 1960s officials of the Diocese of Duluth knew a parish priest assigned to St. Rose Parish in Proctor, Minnesota, Father John Nicholson, was sexually abusing children but failed to report the abuse to law enforcement or take action to keep the priest from harming other children.

The lawsuit seeks to have the names of the priests accused of sexually molesting children made public. In 2004 the Diocese of Duluth admitted that it had the names of 17 priests who had been accused of sexually molesting minors in the Diocese of Duluth.

The Plaintiff, identified as John Doe 5 to protect his privacy, appeared at a press conference in Duluth today and said, “I am here today to make sure that children are safe and let survivors know that they now have a chance at justice. Children can’t be safe without the Diocese coming clean about what it knows about abuse in this Diocese. That should start with the Diocese releasing the names of the 17 priests it knows were accused of sexually molesting children.”

Also at the press conference, Mike Finnegan, an attorney for the Jeff Anderson & Associates in St. Paul, who is representing Doe 5, explained that the lawsuit claims that the Diocese’s failure to take any action, such as reporting to law enforcement or warning parish families about the priest, caused his client to be abused. “They choose to protect themselves and avoid scandal over protecting children in their care from harm. For that, this courageous survivor deserves justice and accountability.”

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