As deadline nears, adults flood Arizona courts with lawsuits alleging childhood sex abuse

Arizona Republic

December 30, 2020

By Lauren Castle

Hundreds of civil lawsuits by people who allege they suffered abuse as children are being filed in Arizona’s courts as a year-end deadline looms for them to seek justice.

Many of those filing are listed in court documents simply as “John Doe” or “Jane Doe.”

They have filed civil complaints against priests, teachers, volunteers, the Roman Catholic Church, the Presbyterian Church, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Boy Scout councils, Big Brothers Big Sisters and other institutions.

The Arizona Child Victims Act allows survivors of sex abuse to sue their perpetrators and organizations that allowed the incident to happen. The act, passed by lawmakers in 2019, raised the statute of limitations for a civil claim to the age of 30 from the previous age of 20. Survivors who are 30 or older have until Dec. 31 to file a claim.

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