May 02, 2005

Priest sexual abuse trial to begin Monday

Sioux City Journal

DAVENPORT, Iowa (AP) -- Trial was scheduled to begin Monday in Scott County District Court in a lawsuit alleging sexual abuse by a defrocked priest in the Roman Catholic Diocese of Davenport.

The lawsuit was filed in 2003 by a man who claims James Janssen abused him decades ago, beginning in the early 1950s. The lawsuit claims the diocese kept the abuse secret for 40 years.

Janssen was removed from the priesthood by the Vatican in September.

The plaintiff's attorney, Craig Levien, said last-minute settlement talks on Thursday failed in the case. The settlement meetings were accompanied by last-day court filings that listed possible evidence and potential witnesses.

Several other people also claim Janssen abused them as children and have filed similar lawsuits.

"It's time for the truth to come out," said one woman whose husband claimed abuse by Janssen. "That's what's going to help the victims."

Posted by kshaw at May 2, 2005 06:48 AM