Buffalo lawsuit claims Erie’s Trautman covered up abuse


January 2, 2020

By Ed Palattella

Suit cites Trautman’s tenure as official in Catholic Diocese of Buffalo but also names Erie diocese, which he later led.

Retired Erie Catholic Bishop Donald W. Trautman has been named as a defendant in a lawsuit that claims he covered up clergy sexual abuse when he was auxiliary bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Buffalo, a post he held before he was named head of the Erie diocese in 1990.

The suit, filed Tuesday in Erie County Supreme Court in Buffalo, New York, claims the abuse occurred in the Diocese of Buffalo in the mid-1980s and not in the Catholic Diocese of Erie.

But an amended version of the suit, filed on Thursday, adds the Catholic Diocese of Erie as a defendant, claiming that Trautman continued to cover up abuse allegations while he was bishop of the Erie diocese through his retirement in 2012.

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