Alleged church sex abuse victim asks federal court to make Archdiocese documents public


July 10, 2020

By Kimberly Curth

In a new motion filed this week, an alleged church sex abuse survivor is fighting to unseal church documents.His case, along with more than 30 others, was immediatey stayed and moved to Federal court when the Archdiocese filed for bankruptcy in May.

The anonymous plaintiff referred to as JW Doe says former priest Lawrence Hecker sexually abused him. The Archdiocese placed Hecker on the 2018 list of clergy credibly accused of child sex abuse. According to the new motion, “the documents are relevant to all of Hecker’s victims as well as to the Archdiocese’s policy, practice, and procedure of covering up abuse allegations and enabling predators.”

“Basically, they’re saying this stuff that has been redacted by the Archdiocese should not have been redacted by the Archdiocese, that the plaintiffs were entitled to it and judge you need to make them turn that over to us, which is all really part of the discovery issues and why they don’t want to be in bankruptcy court, they want to be back in state court, where they can get all of this discovery,” said Fox 8 Legal Analyst Joe Raspanti.

The plaintiff’s attorneys also object to the Archdiocese’s payment to certain professionals, whose names are redacted in the motion. According to the federal documents, “these ‘ordinary course professionals’ should not be allowed to be retained by the Archdiocese” without “a thorough review of the documents” and “discovery to determine the full breadth of their involvement in the various cover-ups.” The plaintiff’s lawyers add “whatever the debtor was to pay these “professionals” would be better served paying sexual abuse claims.”

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