New Sexual Abuse Claims against Former Local Priests

March 23, 2010

[with video ]

Three more men have stepped forward claiming they were sexually abused while attending the now defunct St. Anthony's Seminary in Santa Barbara during the 1970's and 80's.

Each of the men have filed a public complaint against the Franciscan Friars of California and Old Mission Santa Barbara.

A total of 27 Franciscan perpetrators are named in the complaints combined and the allegations against some of them are graphic in nature.

At least one of the three plaintiff's claim sexual abuse by Franciscan Fathers Dave Johnson and Phillip Wolfe. All 3 complaints call for damages and injunctive relief for 13 causes of action including public nuisance, negligence and failure to warn.

A statement sent to KEY news from the Franciscan Province of Santa Barbara reads in part:

"As for the claims by the three individual plaintiffs, these were filed just recently, so we have not been able to speak with them about their allegations."

The new complaints were filed last November and December. Now comes the initial challenge to the pleadings to determine whether or not they can go forward. That hearing is set for April 20th in Santa Barbara Superior Court.


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