Priest Rape Suit Gets Dismissed

By Art Golab
Chicago Sun-Times
April 27, 2002

While assigned to a Southwest Side parish, a Catholic priest raped and impregnated a Polish immigrant, who gave birth to a child after the cleric tried to persuade her to get an abortion, according to a lawsuit dismissed Friday.

Though DNA tests proved that the Rev. Walter Strus, formerly of Five Holy Martyrs Church, was the child's father, a judge dismissed the suit in response to arguments that the Archdiocese of Chicago is not responsible for the sexual conduct of its employees while off duty and off church property.

"The Catholic bishop did not have a duty to track Father Strus when he was away from the parish, on a private frolic, to discover what he might be doing in secret with Plaintiff or others," church attorneys wrote.

The woman's attorney, John Winters, said he will refile the suit with information indicating Strus' superiors knew of his activities, therefore making them liable.


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