Man to sue Archdiocese of Duluth, alleging priest abuse


A man in his 50s on Monday plans to file a lawsuit against the Archdiocese of Duluth, alleging that a priest abused him in his youth at Sacred Heart Church in Duluth, KSTP reports.

The lawsuit is being prepared by St. Paul lawyer Jeff Anderson, who has filed a number of lawsuits in recent months against the Catholic church, but primarily against the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis. The lawsuit will allege that Archdiocese of Duluth officials knew about the priest's inappropriate behavior with boys and were negligent in their supervision of him, KSTP reports.

Anderson's firm also wants the Archdiocese of Duluth to release names of 17 other priests suspected of abuse, KSTP reports.

The lawsuit Monday would be the latest in a long string of lawsuits this year filed against priests and the Catholic church in Minnesota. In May, the Minnesota Legislature approved the Child Victims Act, which lifted the statute of limitations for childhood sexual abuse cases in civil court. That allowed lawsuits against priests and churches, even if the abuse happened decades ago. Accusers have three years to file the lawsuits.

A civil lawsuit filed in June by a 55-year-old man who says he was abused by a priest as a young boy was the first filed in St. Louis County under the new law. Michael DeRoche says he was abused when he was 9 years old by Father John Nicholson, who has since died, at St. Rose in Proctor, Northland's Newscenter reported.

The Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minnesota has been sued more 20 times in recent months.

Last week, the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis released a list of 30 priests credibly accused of abuse, some of whom have been charged and some who have not.

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