Lawsuits claim priest in ‘The Exorcist,’ three others sexually abused McQuaid students

Democrat & Chronicle

July 21, 2020

By Steve Orr

Three priests and a lay teacher who taught at McQuaid Jesuit High School decades ago have been accused of sexually abusing students there in newly filed lawsuits.

In a suit filed Tuesday morning, a one-time star teacher at the Brighton school, the Rev. William O’Malley, was accused of sexually abusing a student there in 1975 or 1976.

O’Malley, who left McQuaid in 1986, was well-known for his teaching and writing and for his role as a Jesuit priest in the supernatural hit film “The Exorcist.”

It is the second such suit against O’Malley. The first, filed 11 months ago, accused him of sexually abusing a student at the all-boys school in 1985 and 1986.

A separate lawsuit filed Monday laid new accusations against another former teacher at McQuaid — John Tobin, who has been the subject of high-profile claims of sexual abuse by a McQuaid graduate and the focus of other complaints to police.

The new lawsuit involves a different alleged victim who has not come forward until now, according to a lawyer whose firm brought the case.

The suit says Tobin, who died in 2000, sexually abused the unnamed student at the Brighton high school in 1978 and 1979.

That same lawsuit also accuses the Rev. Harry Untereiner of sexually abusing the student in 1980. Untereiner, who was at McQuaid for a brief period ending in 1980, had not been publicly accused of sexual abuse before now.

One of his other students, the writer Tom Chiarella, published a lengthy article in Esquire magazine in 2003 about Tobin and his experiences at McQuaid, and has spoken several times to the Democrat and Chronicle about his time there.

Another lawsuit that was filed Monday accuses the Rev. James Curry, who taught history and theology at McQuaid in the 1970s and ‘80s, of sexually abusing a student there between 1974 and 1977. Curry also had not been publicly accused of sexual abuse previously. He died last year.

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