February 26, 2005

Yakima Diocese denies woman's abuse allegations



Associated Press

The Roman Catholic Diocese of Yakima has formally denied the accusations made in a recent lawsuit alleging sexual abuse by a priest.

Rose Yates Lamey, formerly of Zillah, filed suit in early February in Yakima County Superior Court, claiming she was raped by the Rev. Michael Simpson in 1962 when she was 10.

On Wednesday, lawyers for the diocese said the church had no knowledge of any alleged abuse at the time by Simpson, who is deceased.

"Defendant is without information sufficient to form a belief as to the truth of the allegations and therefore denies them," Seattle lawyers Thomas Frey and Michael Bolasina wrote.

The diocese attorneys also argued that the statute of limitations has elapsed. Generally, juvenile victims of sexual abuse have three years after they reach adulthood to file lawsuits. One exception could be "repressed memory," in which the victim doesn't remember the incident until undergoing therapy.

The next step for Lamey's lawsuit will be a scheduling order set by the court.

Posted by kshaw at February 26, 2005 01:46 AM