Franciscan Brother Accused of Sex Abuse Previously Coached in Johnstown

January 18, 2013

A Franciscan brother who is accused of sexually abusing 11 students at an Ohio high school in the 1980s previously coached a Johnstown high school baseball team.

6 News has learned that Brother Stephen Baker, who now lives in Blair County, was a trainer with the Bishop McCort High School baseball team in the late 1990s and early 2000s.

Prior to his time in Johnstown, Baker was accused of molesting boys at John F. Kennedy High School in Warren, Ohio, from 1986-90. Baker was also a baseball coach and trainer at the Ohio school. Two of the alleged victims from Warren told an Ohio television station that the sexual abuse would happen after practice in the Warren high school’s training room.

The victims’ attorneys told 6 News that Baker settled out of court with the Ohio boys involved in the 1980s. The attorneys said Baker was never criminally charged.

An official with the Blair County monastery where Baker now lives said Baker has been removed from all public ministry, is living under supervision and has no contact with minors.

According to The Associated Press, because of statute of limitation issues, the cases were resolved without charges or lawsuits. Mediation settlements involved the school, Third Order Regular Franciscans and Youngstown Catholic Diocese, which said it was unaware of the allegations until nearly 20 years after the alleged abuse.

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