March 31, 2006

2 lawsuits say abuse bill should be voided

Toledo Blade


COLUMBUS - Two lawsuits claiming several House Republicans illegally plotted behind closed doors were filed yesterday seeking to invalidate a vote that killed a proposal to allow lawsuits in child sexual-abuse cases dating back 35 years.

"Participating in the legislative process has been personally devastating and a rude awakening. We never stood a chance," said Claudia Vercellotti, Toledo coordinator for the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests.

Judge John Connor of Franklin County Common Pleas Court, whom House Speaker Jon Husted (R., Kettering) had suggested should resign or be impeached just weeks ago for his lenient sentencing of a sex offender, declined to issue an injunction preventing Gov. Bob Taft from signing the bill. He set a hearing for May 2.

Christy Miller and Dan Frondorf, both of Cincinnati, and Ms. Vercellotti, all of whom claim to have been abused by priests or other representatives of the Catholic Church, contended Mr. Husted met with a majority of House Judiciary Committee members Tuesday in violation of Ohio's open-meetings law.

Posted by kshaw at March 31, 2006 08:28 AM