Statute of Limitations Case Heard

By Rocco LaDuca
The Observer-Dispatch
January 4, 2006

ALBANY -- The New York state Court of Appeals heard arguments today whether the statute of limitations should not shield Catholic priest the Rev. James Quinn from allegations he sexually abused a young parishioner in Utica more than 30 years ago.

Utica attorney Frank Policelli argued Quinn's case should be reinstated for trial because Quinn and the Catholic Diocese of Syracuse had concealed the alleged abuse of John Zumpano between 1963 to 1970.

That prevented Zumpano from realizing he could "take action against the wrongful acts," Policelli argued.

Mark Schulte, the attorney for the diocese, argued, however, there were no allegations of specific "subsequent acts of wrongdoing" that prevented Zumpano from taking action.

The court also heard arguments by an attorney representing 42 plaintiffs who claimed there was a larger scheme by the Catholic Diocese of Brooklyn to conceal more than 40 years of alleged sexual abuse by 13 priests.

The court will decide at a later date if the statute of limitations should be upheld in all these cases.


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