Sexual Abuse Settlement

KWWL [Iowa]
March 27, 2007

The Archdiocese of Dubuque will pay $2.6 million in a settlement with nine sexual abuse victims involving their priests. Thomas Staack and Chad Swanson, the lawyers who are representing the victims announced the details of the settlement during a news conference this morning.

he settlement was reached through private mediation and will not go to trial. The nine victims in include seven males and two females.

The claims relate to sexual abuse involving six priests: Patrick McElliot who served at St. Patricks in Ryan; William Schwartz who served at Columbus High School in Waterloo; John Brickle of St. Patrick's in Nevada; Joseph Patnode of St. Patrick's in Nevada; Timothy Devenney, of St. Columkille's in Dubuque; and Allen Schmitt, who served in Sacred Heart in Waterloo.

Thomas Staack, the victims' lawyer says: "This is a process. It's not just the process starts when they come forward and unfortunately for many of these people it won't end very easily, but it will end and we hope we can be a part of that."

This is the second time the Dubuque Archdiocese settled sexual abuse claims. In February of last year, the archdiocese paid $5 million to 20 people for sexual abuse claims.


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