October 18, 2005

Second woman joins suit accusing priest of abuse

Anchorage Daily News

The Associated Press

Published: October 18, 2005
Last Modified: October 18, 2005 at 02:15 AM

A second woman has joined a lawsuit against a longtime Roman Catholic priest, alleging she was sexually abused as a child in the Western Alaska community of Hooper Bay.

The plaintiff, identified as June Doe 2, contends she was molested by the Rev. Richard L. McCaffrey after catechism sessions in the early 1980s. Like June Doe 1, she is seeking more than $50,000 for pain and suffering, with the exact award to be determined at trial.

The amended lawsuit, filed Friday in Bethel, names McCaffrey, the Catholic Bishop of Northern Alaska and the Society of Jesus, Oregon Province. The initial lawsuit was filed in August.

McCaffrey, reached by phone Monday in Spokane, Wash., said he had not seen the lawsuit.

"I don't know anything about it. I'm sorry," he said. He referred further questions to his Fairbanks attorney, John Franich, who said his office has not been served with even the original lawsuit. He knows only what he hears in news reports, he said.

"We will certainly respond to it when we're served, at which time we will categorically deny any allegations," Franich said. "Father McCaffrey has never had any inappropriate sexual contact with any of his parishioners."

Posted by kshaw at October 18, 2005 08:52 AM