April 23, 2005

Diocese agrees to $3.3M

Contra Costa Times

By Kiley Russell

OAKLAND - A woman who said she endured six years of sexual abuse by a Catholic priest announced a $3.3 million settlement Friday with the Santa Rosa Diocese.

Roberta Saum, 44, sued the diocese in 2002 for negligence, claiming it helped conceal the alleged abuse by Donald Kimball.

"When I was a 15-year-old troubled teen, I went to the Catholic Church for help and instead of getting the help I needed, I was abused," Saum said.

The settlement is the largest for a female plaintiff in a priest abuse case and is a huge victory in the ongoing legal struggle to force the church to atone for its role in protecting sexually violent priests, Saum's lawyer Jeff Anderson said.

During the time Kimball was allegedly abusing Saum, he was also in therapy for abusing other girls, Anderson said.

Posted by kshaw at April 23, 2005 07:07 AM