Priest exonerated after abuse allegations by Ellensburg man

Associated Press

December 20, 2020

One of four priests accused of sexual abuse by an Ellensburg man has been exonerated, with the man’s attorneys expressing regret over the false accusation and the priest being restored to ministry.

The Rev. Seamus Kerr, 91, was named in a lawsuit filed in Kittitas County last year by a man identified only as John Doe, the Yakima Herald-Republic reported. The man said he was abused as a boy in the late 1970s and early 1980s at St. Andrew Catholic Church in Ellensburg.

But during the course of the litigation, it was revealed that Kerr, who has been a priest for 60 years, was wrongly accused. The lawsuit was settled on Dec. 10, with the Catholic Diocese of Yakima agreeing to pay $15,000 in past and future counseling costs for the man in exchange for the lawsuit’s dismissal.

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