November 18, 2005

Priest accused of sex abuse: Navy officer alleges molestation in ’80s while student


By Drew Volturo, Delaware State News

WILMINGTON — A U.S. Navy commander filed a federal lawsuit Thursday alleging that he was sexually molested by a priest while attending a Claymont Catholic school in the 1980s and began pushing for legislation to extend the time limit for victims to bring civil suits in Delaware.

In a 23-page suit filed in U.S. District Court in Wilmington, Lt. Cmdr. Kenneth J. Whitwell said the Rev. Edward J. Smith molested him during two ski trips to Killington, Vt., in 1984-85, when he was a student at Archmere Academy.

However, Mr. Whitwell said Thursday that the abuse went far beyond the two alleged incidents, lasting for nine years.

“I was a typical victim, a quiet, shy, 14-year-old freshman,” said Mr. Whitwell, wearing a Navy dress uniform with his wife Amy by his side.

“He carved me out of the pack, so to speak. He befriended me by paying attention to me. He was my religion teacher and befriended my family.”

Posted by kshaw at November 18, 2005 08:47 AM