November 02, 2005

Abuse victim: Laws need to protect children, not abusers

Duluth News Tribune

Associated Press

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. - A woman who settled a federal lawsuit that accused a Roman Catholic priest of sexual abuse and two dioceses of helping conceal it says she's speaking out to try to lift statutes of limitation that protect abusers instead of victims.

Judy DeLonga said she didn't recognize that she was abused until a few years ago and that it has taken her 40 years to begin to understand the ramifications of the abuse.

DeLonga did not a sign a confidentiality agreement but would not disclose the settlement amount. She said she doesn't want the focus to be on money but rather on changing the laws in South Dakota and other states to better protect children.

"This could take decades to unbury what is so deeply hidden," said DeLonga, speaking Wednesday during a news conference in front of the federal courthouse in Sioux Falls. "You can't put a set limit on when or where it will happen."

Posted by kshaw at November 2, 2005 05:52 PM