Pueblo Diocese Pays out $4 Million

By Danielle Saar

October 31, 2008

[with video]

PLAY VIDEO: Pueblo Diocese To Pay Out $4 Million

Twenty-three victims who say they were sexually abused by a former Catholic high school teacher, will now split a four million dollar settlement.

That settlement was announced Thursday from one of the attorneys representing those 23 alleged victims.

The lawyer who was speaking on behalf of the 23 accusers says he has worked on many sexual abuse cases, but never had this many victims come forward from one alleged predator.

On the steps of the Pueblo County Courthouse, Adam Horowitz, attorney for the plaintiffs announced the 4-million dollar settlement of 23 lawsuits brought against the Diocese of Pueblo and the Marianist religious order.

Each of the lawsuits alleges sexual abuse by a former teacher at Roncalli Middle School, back when it was a high school.

The lawsuit claims Brother William Mueller abused his students in a sound proof area of the band room.

They allege he would use ether to knock out the students and then molest them.

The attorney says he's happy that his clients are finding closure, but is disturbed because he says church leaders knew Mueller was a sexual predator in St. Louis before teaching at Roncalli.

"In each of our lawsuits, we allege that the Diocese of Pueblo and the Marianist religious order were negligent in the supervision of their teacher, who they knew was sexually abusing students and failed to prevent it," says Horowitz.

Horowitz tells 11 News 16 of the 23 victims still live in Pueblo, and are getting counseling for what happened to them.

Mueller now lives in San Antonio, Texas, and denies any sexual misconduct.

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