Former Priest Sued Again for Abuse

By Tim Townsend
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
May 30, 2007

A former priest with the Archdiocese of St. Louis was sued Tuesday by a man accusing him of sexual abuse at St. George Parish in Affton 30 years ago.

At a news conference Tuesday, attorney Ken Chackes, said his client …amp;quot; referred to in the case only as John Doe BA …amp;quot; was 13 in 1977 when the abuse is alleged to have taken place.

The suit, filed in St. Louis County Circuit Court, says that Donald Straub "worked with, mentored and counseled" the teenager at Resurrection Parish in St. Louis, but that the abuse occurred at St. George.

Straub, who is now 58 and lives in Crestwood, was ordained in 1975. He served at St. George's in 1977, when he was removed from ministry by St. Louis Archbishop Cardinal John Carberry.

The lawsuit says church officials knew about the alleged abuse, but failed to report it and helped cover it up. It also names the archdiocese and St. Louis Archbishop Raymond Burke as defendants.

Documents were released by one of Straub's victims earlier this month, after he had agreed to a settlement with the archdiocese. The papers showed that Carberry and his successor, Archbishop John May, knew about Straub's actions, yet allowed him to continue working in parishes for years afterward.

Four cases involving Straub over the last couple of years have been settled by the archdiocese for less than $200,000, according to Chackes.

Chackes also noted Tuesday that the archdiocese had filed suit against his law firm, Chackes, Carlson, Spritzer and Ghio. The archdiocese's suit, filed May 11, seeks relief against what it called the firm's "past disclosure and anticipated future disclosure" of archdiocesan personnel and medical records to "third parties," including the Post-Dispatch.

The archdiocese's request for a temporary restraining order in St. Louis Circuit Court was denied by Judge John Garvey this month. The next hearing is scheduled for July. | 314-340-8221


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