February 18, 2005

Suit claims repressed memory

Rocky Mountain News

By Jean Torkelson, Rocky Mountain News
February 18, 2005

A California man has filed a repressed memory lawsuit against a religious order and the Pueblo Catholic diocese, claiming he was molested by a priest who committed suicide 13 years ago.

Wayne Dennis Corder sued the Diocese of Pueblo and the Benedictine order of priests last November. He charged that a teacher, the Rev. Richard Chung, sexually abused him in 1982 while he was a 14-year-old attending Holy Cross Abbey, a Benedictine boarding school in Caņon City.

Chung, 40, killed himself in 1992, one day after he was suspended from his teaching job at a Catholic high school in Colorado Springs while officials investigated another sex abuse allegation by a student. The priest asphyxiated himself by sitting in his garage with the car engine running.

Corder's 2004 suit claims the Catholic leadership "had an unwritten policy of condoning pedophilia at the Abbey school."

"Nonsense," said attorney Jack Donley, who represents the Benedictines. He declined further comment. The Diocese of Pueblo said no one was available for comment.

Posted by kshaw at February 18, 2005 09:02 AM