July 08, 2005

High court to hear priest abuse case

The Observer-Dispatch

Fri, Jul 8, 2005


UTICA - The state's highest court reversed its earlier decision and ruled this week it would hear arguments regarding allegations a Catholic priest sexually abused a youth in Utica more than 30 years ago.

In late 2003, a state Supreme Court judge dismissed a $150 million civil lawsuit against the Rev. James Quinn, ruling too many years had passed to pursue allegations the priest sexually abused John Zumpano while he was a youth during the 1960s.

On Wednesday, the state Court of Appeals decided it will review the dismissal to determine if it should be upheld or reversed.

Zumpano's attorney, Frank Policelli, said Thursday he is arguing the 10-year statute of limitations should not apply in this case. If the alleged sexual abuse did in fact occur, he said, then perhaps a young Zumpano would have been too traumatized to file charges in a timely manner.

"Zumpano did not bring his action when he should have because the abuse caused him to become mentally incapable to protect and safeguard his legal rights," Policelli said of the allegations.

Posted by kshaw at July 8, 2005 05:55 AM