In two Florida lawsuits filed in Miami-Dade Circuit Court, two more men are suing a former Broward County priest for child sex abuse. They claim that Rev. Neil Doherty gave them toys and money in exchange for sex when they were kids in the 1980’s. They also allege that the Archdiocese of Miami knew about the abuse but tried to cover up the incidents.
The two men, who are cousins, are also related to other victims that have sued the archdiocese for sex abuse. Many of the cases have settled without going to trial. These two lawsuits are the latest of 14 lawsuits naming Doherty.
Doherty, who retired in 2002, is accused of sexually abusing boys in the St. Mary’s Cathedral rectory, his car, and his private residence. The Miami Archdiocese is accused of interviewing his victims in 1987 and then trying to conceal their findings.
Clergy Sex Abuse
Clergy sex abuse is an insidious problem that has only been brought to awareness in recent years.
According to the John Jay College of Criminal Justice, between 1950 and 2002:
• 4,392 priests/deacons were accused of sexual abuse.
• More than 10,600 people reported that they were victims of clergy abuse.
• 81% of the victims were male.
• 50% of the victims were age 11-14 years old when the abuse happened.
Priests are often entrusted with the supervision of children, and when they abuse this trust by sexually molesting or assaulting a child, they can be held liable.
In a separate criminal case, the 65-year-old former St. Vincent’s Catholic Church pastor has been charged with multiple counts of molestation, lewd and lascivious acts, and sexual battery. Doherty has pled not guilty to the charges.
Our South Florida child sex abuse law firm knows that sexual abuse is a trauma that can lead to lifelong emotional injuries and other damages. We can work with you to recover compensation from the negligent party.
Former Broward priest faces two lawsuits on molestation charges, Sun-Sentinel.com, June 26, 2008
Clergy abuse statistics at a glance, Clergy Abuse Statistics, February 27, 2004
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