You are reading

Brooklyn Diocese Hit With Dozens of Sex Abuse Lawsuits Since Wednesday, 6 Cases in Queens

St. Patrick Church, Long Island City at 39-38 29th St

Aug. 15, 2019 By Shane O’Brien

Dozens of child sexual abuse lawsuits have been filed against the Brooklyn Diocese since Wednesday–as the one-year “lookback” provision of the Child Victims Act kicked in across the state.

The “lookback” window went into effect Aug. 14 and allows previously time-barred survivors of child sexual abuse to file suit regardless of when the abuse took place. Therefore, victims who were unable to file suit due to the statute of limitations are now able to seek redress.

Across the state, hundreds of cases have been filed against major institutions since the look-back period began, including against the Boy Scouts of America, Rockefeller University and Catholic groups and dioceses.

The Brooklyn Diocese, which incorporates Brooklyn and Queens, has been named in about 40 lawsuits since Wednesday, with six against churches in Queens.

The six churches in Queens include Our Lady of the Angelus Church in Rego Park; St. Patrick Church in Long Island City; and St. Margaret’s School and Catholic Church in Middle Village.

Jennifer Freeman, an attorney with the Marsh Law Firm in New York, said that the lookback period allows sexual abuse victims to finally hold their abusers accountable no matter how long ago the misdeeds took place.

The Child Victims Act was signed into law by Governor Andrew Cuomo on Feb. 14, with the one-year lookback period kicking in Aug 14. The bill was initially introduced by former Assemblywoman Margaret Markey more than a decade ago but was never able to pass the senate until the Democrats took control of the chamber this year.

“For years this law has been hard fought so that survivors in New York City could hold their abusers accountable and seek justice. That moment is now here,” Freeman said. “Sexual predators and large institutions have attempted to hide heinous abuse for too long, and today, we can begin to heal the pain and suffering our clients in New York City have experienced over decades.”

Samantha Breakstone, an attorney representing Weitz and Luxenberg, said that the provision gives many people an opportunity to have a voice and seek justice.

Breakstone said that Weitz and Luxenberg had filed nine lawsuits across the state since the lookback period opened, including one in Queens against St. Margaret’s School and Catholic Church in Middle Village. However, she said that she expects that number to rise quickly as more people come forward.

The Brooklyn Diocese issued a statement on Wednesday offering solidarity with the victims.

Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio apologized and said that the Brooklyn Diocese has implemented aggressive policies to ensure that sexual abuse never happens again.

The diocese has paid more than $90 million in settlements and worked with nearly 500 victims. Earlier this year it released the names of every clergy member who was credibly accused of sexual abuse throughout the history of the diocese.

“Today, we stand with victims who were sexually abused as children,” DiMarzio said in a statement. “We have reached this point because too many victims all across society have sadly carried this heavy cross for far too long. Sexual abuse is a heinous crime, and victim-survivors now have a new avenue to seek redress through the Child Victims Act.

“For anyone abused by a priest, employee or volunteer — I am sorry that a member of our church who you trusted became the source of pain and anguish. You should know the Diocese of Brooklyn has instituted the most aggressive policies to prevent any future abuse and to protect children.”

email the author: news@queenspost.com

One Comment

Click for Comments 

Leave a Comment
Reply to this Comment

All comments are subject to moderation before being posted.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Recent News

Southeast Queens man arraigned on weapons charges after cops search his ‘ghost car’ near LaGuardia Airport: DA

A Hollis man was criminally charged after police discovered a cache of weapons in his vehicle during a traffic stop. He was pulled over for driving a “ghost car” with obscured license plates in East Elmhurst near LaGuardia Airport during the early morning hours of June 12.

Judd Sanson, 27, of Jamaica Avenue, was ordered held without bail after he was arraigned in Queens Criminal Court on Thursday afternoon on a criminal complaint charging him with multiple counts of weapons possession, unlawful possession of pistol or revolver ammunition, and unlawful use of a police uniform or emblem and other crimes after the arsenal was found in his SUV.

‘Ghost car’ driver arrested in East Elmhurst after traffic stop reveals weapons, threatening note: NYPD

Police from the 110th Precinct in Elmhurst discovered an arsenal of weapons in a ghost car they pulled over on Ditmars Boulevard and 86th Street in East Elmhurst early Wednesday morning.

NYPD Chief of Department Jeffrey Maddrey held a press briefing at the 110th Precinct on Wednesday afternoon to discuss what the sergeant and three officers from the 110th Precinct public safety team found when they pulled over a black Ford Explorer at around 1:30 a.m. because it had blacked-out license plates.

Henry ‘Hank’ Krumholz, stalwart pioneer of Queens LGBTQ Pride, dies at 73

Henry “Hank” Krumholz, a pioneering gay rights activist in Queens, passed away on Sunday in his Flushing apartment at the age of 73.

Krumholz played a crucial role in the establishment and success of the Queens LGBTQ Pride Parade, which is held annually in Jackson Heights. He joined the parade’s sponsoring organization right after its inaugural event in 1993 and continued his involvement for decades. His passing came just a week after this year’s parade on June 2, marking its 31st anniversary.