|Ex-Student Sues, Claims He Was Molested by 2 Priests at Same Time
Man Claims in Lawsuit That Priests at Huntington Beach Parish Molested Him When He Was 8 Years Old
By Rachanee Srisavasdi
Orange County Register
June 11, 2009
SANTA ANA – A former Catholic school student claims that two priests at a Huntington Beach parish molested him in the early 1990s, and also blames the Roman Catholic Diocese of Orange for not removing one of the clerics from the school even after another accuser was paid a monetary settlement.
The accusations directed at Rev. Gus Krumm, a former associate pastor at Sts. Simon and Jude Catholic Church and Rev. Alexander Manville, a retired priest who still resides at the parish, were detailed in a lawsuit filed this week in Orange County Superior Court.
Krumm, a Franciscan priest who has since been removed from ministry, had been an associate pastor at Sts. Simon and Jude from July 1998 to September 1998 before he left to become head pastor of a Portland church. He was later moved to a Sacramento church, and was removed there in 2003 after admitting to sexual misconduct with children, according to news reports.
Diocese of Orange officials allowed Krumm to stay at the Huntington Beach parish for at least two years – after being informed in 1996 that St. Anthony's Seminary in Santa Barbara reached a settlement with a man who accused Krumm of molesting him at that school during the 1980-81 school year.
"It's egregious conduct to know you have someone that preys upon children and has done it in the past," said H. Shaina Colover, who represents the plaintiff. "Instead of taking him out of the school, they held him out as someone qualified and acceptable ... to care for children. It was a flat-out lie to the community."
In the lawsuit filed Monday, the now 25-year-old plaintiff – identified as "John Doe" to protect his identity – said he began attending the parish's school in 1990.
He was 8 years old in the 1992-93 school year when both Manville and Krumm – both active pastors at the parish – "engaged in illegal sexual contact" with him, including once at the same time, according to the lawsuit.
Colover said her client did not report the abuse at the time, and that his parents also didn't know of the molestation. He later left the school because he was unhappy there, she added.
Ryan Lilyengren, a spokesman for the diocese, said the diocese has not received the lawsuit. He declined to comment on its accusations because it is pending litigation.
Besides the diocese, other defendants include Manville, Krumm and the Franciscan Friars of California.
Rev. Ken Laverone, the Vicar Provincial for the Franciscan Friars of California, said he could not comment on the lawsuit because they had not been served with it yet. He said Krumm was no longer a priest and was dispensed of his vows about two years ago.
Manville and Krumm couldn't be reached for comment.
Sex-abuse lawsuits against the diocese made headlines in 2005, when the diocese paid out $100 million to settle lawsuits brought by 90 sex-abuse complainants. Since then, several other sex-abuse lawsuits accusing priests or employees of the diocese have been filed in Superior Court, including a lawsuit brought earlier this year by Jonathan Kirrer of Fountain Valley.
Kirrer, now 24, claimed that Rev. Denis Lyons sexually abused him when Kirrer was a student at St. John the Baptist School in 1994 and 1995. He settled his lawsuit against the diocese in February for an undisclosed amount.
County prosecutors are still weighing whether to file criminal charges against Lyons, who was removed from the ministry in 2002.
Contact the writer: 714-834-3773 or email@example.com
Any original material on these pages is copyright © BishopAccountability.org 2004. Reproduce freely with attribution.