May 18, 2005

Sugar Grove man alleges sex abuse, sues ex-priest

Chicago Tribune

By Rita Hoover
Special to the Tribune
Published May 18, 2005

A Sugar Grove man who claims he was sexually abused in 1982 by a former priest has filed a civil suit against him and the Catholic Archdiocese of Milwaukee.

The lawsuit, filed Monday by Charles Linneman, 36, alleges that Franklyn Becker, who was defrocked in December, sexually molested him in 1982.

Linneman reportedly met Becker, 67, while attending St. Joseph Catholic Church in Lyons, Wis., in 1980. According to Linneman's attorney, Jeff Anderson, Becker was transferred out of the Lyons church that same year, but the priest invited Linneman to visit him at his new Milwaukee parish, where the sexual molestation allegedly took place.

According to Kathleen Hohl, archdiocese of Milwaukee communications director, church officials have taken appropriate action to alert the public about Becker.

In December, when Becker was officially removed from the priesthood, church officials contacted Dodge County Sheriff Todd M. Nehls about Becker's history and his residence in that Wisconsin county. Hohl said it is church policy to notify local law enforcement in such circumstances.

Posted by kshaw at May 18, 2005 05:32 AM