October 26, 2005

Ex-priest, archdiocese face 2 new sex-abuse suits

Indianapolis Star

By Robert King

A former priest, already the subject of two sex-abuse lawsuits, was sued Tuesday by two former altar boys who claim they were molested in the 1970s.
As with claims made in September, the two new accusers filed their suits against the Rev. Harry Monroe without revealing their identities. The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Indianapolis also was named as a defendant in the suits.

Patrick Noaker, a Minnesota attorney representing all four accusers, said the new plaintiffs are men in their 40s who were members of St. Catherine parish from 1976 to 1978. The parish was later merged with another to form Good Shepherd parish.

Noaker claimed Monroe gave the boys alcohol "to kind of ply them into submission" and that the abuse allegedly took place in both the priest's quarters and on camping excursions at Turkey Run State Park near Rockville.

Archdiocesan officials have said Monroe, 57, was relieved of ministerial duties in 1984 because of allegations of sexual misconduct. Susan Borcherts, a spokeswoman for the archdiocese, declined to comment on the lawsuits.

Posted by kshaw at October 26, 2005 08:30 AM