April 12, 2005

Man who triggered abuse suits testifies

Mercury News

By Brandon Bailey
Mercury News

Nearly five years after he told church officials about a popular priest who molested kids -- and three years after he first told his story in public -- John Salberg got his chance Monday to tell a jury how the late Rev. Joseph Pritchard took advantage of Salberg and his closest friends.

``A priest was everything -- the closest thing to God you could think of,'' testified Salberg, 40, a lifelong San Jose resident who said he was taught by teachers and parents to revere the pastor at St. Martin of Tours parish.

``If he said `Come over here,' I'd come over. There was no saying no to him,'' Salberg explained to jurors in San Francisco Superior Court, who are hearing testimony in a lawsuit against the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of San Francisco.

Posted by kshaw at April 12, 2005 08:47 AM