3 new church sex abuse lawsuits filed, 1 dismissed Victim alleges priest physically abused him to comply for sex
By Mindy Aguon
Guam Daily Post
September 02, 2017
|ABUSE: A former altar boy alleges he was physically and sexually abused between the ages of 10 and 16 while serving as an altar boy at Our Lady of Peace and Safe Journey Catholic Church in Chalan Pago. |
A former altar boy has come forward alleging a priest repeatedly physically abused him to force him to perform sexual acts when he was a young boy.
R.J.S., who filed the lawsuit using initials to protect his identity, filed a lawsuit against the Archdiocese of Agana naming deceased priest Antonio Cruz as his abuser.
Attorney David Lujan represents R.J.S., who alleges he was physically and sexually abused between the ages of 10 and 16 while serving as an altar boy at Our Lady of Peace and Safe Journey Catholic Church in Chalan Pago.
R.J.S. said the physical abuse began when he was an altar boy and made mistakes during Mass.
"Cruz would use a closed fist to hit R.J.S. on the head, leaving R.J.S. with a bump. This routinely happened when R.J.S. would make mistakes while serving during Mass," court documents state.
The boy said he first saw Cruz expose himself when he brought the limosna, or money collection offering, to the priest's living quarters. R.J.S. said he was alarmed to see Cruz wearing only a white T-shirt with his private parts exposed.
Every weekend the boy prepared coffee for the priest and realized Cruz was "purposely" trying to expose himself and masturbate in front of the boy.
For five years, the priest allegedly routinely found an excuse for R.J.S. to come to his living quarters and forced the boy to perform sexual acts. When the boy refused, Cruz allegedly physically abused him by slapping him, twisting his ear or hitting him on the head with a closed fist in an effort to get the boy to comply and perform oral sex, court documents state.
The years of sexual abuse put R.J.S. into a deep depression, causing him to get bad grades in school and contemplate suicide several times, the complaint states.
R.J.S. is seeking $5 million in damages.
Two new suits against Brouillard
Attorney Lujan also filed two additional lawsuits against Louis Brouillard, the Archdiocese of Agana and the Boy Scouts of America.
R.E.J. alleges he was sexually molested and abused by Brouillard when Brouillard was scoutmaster with the Boy Scouts of America and a priest at the Barrigada parish.
The 49-year-old alleges he met Brouillard in the late 1970s. Although he wasn't an altar server or a Boy Scout, R.E.J. was allowed to participate in outings with the other boys in the village.
On one occasion, Brouillard picked up R.E.J. and other boys at a house in Barrigada and took them to Lonfit River, where Brouillard allegedly instructed the boys to remove their clothes and swim naked.
R.E.J. was not a good swimmer and was alone in the shallow area of the river. Brouillard encouraged the boy to swim to a deeper area and reassured him that he would hold him, court documents state.
Because Brouillard was a priest and scoutmaster, the boy trusted him.
Once in the deep area, Brouillard instructed the boy to sit on his thigh and he allegedly fondled the boy and forced him to do the same.
After this incident, R.E.J. never participated in any Boy Scout activities or outings again.
He is seeking $10 million in damages.
A resident of Washington state also filed suit against Brouillard alleging sexual abuse during Boy Scout outings when he was 13 or 14 years old.
G.M.Q. alleges Brouillard forced him to fondle the priest and would often "reward" the boys by taking them out to Snow White or other restaurants. The civil complaint alleges this was part of Brouillard's "ongoing grooming campaign as a sexual abuser of minors."
On Thursday, Lujan voluntarily dismissed a lawsuit filed by his client, A.J.A., who filed a civil complaint on Aug. 28, in the District Court against the Archdiocese of Agana and accusing deceased priest Antonio Cruz of sexual abuse.
No reasons were stated for the voluntarily dismissal.