Lawsuit alleges Benedictines covered up abuse allegations


A lawsuit filed in St. Cloud Tuesday accuses the Benedictine Order of covering up sex-abuse allegations that were made against 11 clerics working at St. John’s University in Collegeville in the 1960s, ’70s and ’80s.

Jeramiah McCarthy filed the suit, which alleges that he was molested in 1971 by the late Rev. Bruce Wollmering, an academic counselor. In 2006, investigators determined that similar accusations against Wollmering by a different student were credible.

McCarthy’s suit follows a legal tactic used in six other cases filed in Minnesota and two in North Dakota. Those suits involved the Christian Brothers. This is the first for the Benedictine Order.

Instead of suing for the alleged abuses, for which the statute of limitations has expired, the suits charge the orders with concealing the reports of abuse and, thus, putting other potential victims at risk. A judge has yet to rule on the merit of this argument.

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Lawsuit alleges Benedictines covered up abuse allegations
December 8, 2009

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Topics: Bruce Wollmering

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