Psychologist: Alleged Priest Abuse Victim Still Suffers

Burlington Free Press
August 21, 2008

The former Burlington altar boy still suffers low-grade depression and post-traumatic stress 30 years following his molestation by the Rev. Edward Paquette at Christ the King Church, a local psychologist testified in court on Thursday.

"His claim of experiencing anxiety and depression is borne out not only in his verbal report but in his test results," Dr. Joseph Hasazi told the jury in the clergy sex abuse trial. Hasazi was hired by the man's lawyer and performed a forensic evaluation of him in preparation for the trial.

Tom McCormick, a lawyer for the state's Roman Catholic diocese, got Hasazi to concede the man had a learning disability that preceded the time Paquette allegedly abused him.

"You don't know if his memory that his problems in school was concurrent with the abuse is accurate or not, is that right?" McCormick asked.

"That's correct," Hasazi said.

McCormick is expected to continue questioning Hasazi when court resumes this afternoon.

The Waitsfield man is suing the diocese, claiming it is to blame for his abuse because it knew Paquette had a history of molesting boys before it brought him to Vermont in 1972.


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