Ri Man Says He Was Molested by Catholic Brother

By Laura Crimaldi
Lebanon Daily News
November 22, 2011

A Rhode Island man on Tuesday publicly accused a now-deceased member of a religious order of molesting him during the 1950s at a Roman Catholic boarding school in Massachusetts.

James Meunier, 70, of Pawtucket, said during a news conference that he was sexually abused by the late Brother Regis, who was also known as Raymond Richard, while attending the Sacred Heart Boarding School in Sharon. Meunier said the abuse began in school showers that Regis tasked him with cleaning as a seventh grader.

Meunier said the allegation that former Penn State assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky abused a young boy in school showers has intensified his pain.

"It makes it worse," said Meunier, as he stood across the street from Mount Saint Charles Academy, which is run by the same religious order that ran the boarding school Meunier attended.

Neither the New England Province of the Brothers of the Sacred Heart that Regis belonged to nor its attorney returned messages on Tuesday.

Meunier filed a lawsuit in Norfolk Superior Court in Massachusetts in March against Regis and the school's director, the late Brother Jean-Rosaire. Meunier is represented by Boston attorney Mitchell Garabedian, who has represented many people who say they were molested by clergy and members of religious orders. Garabedian said he's researching whether the school had a liability insurance policy for Regis.

Meunier said Regis was his seventh-grade teacher.

He claimed several months after Regis began abusing him he disclosed what transpired to a priest during a confession. Meunier said after confessing, he was summoned to a meeting with the priest, Regis and school director where he was told if he complained to his parents they would disown him. Meunier said the meeting took place right before Easter break. He said when he went back to school after Easter, Brother Regis was gone.

Meunier said he began remembering the molestation in 2008 after watching a television report about sexual abuse. He said he's been married seven times, has had 82 jobs and does not trust people.

Meunier said he has not reported the abuse to law enforcement. He said he has not contacted the religious order, but Garabedian has.

Meunier said wants the order to provide him with help and counseling. The boarding school has since closed.


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