More sexual abuse survivors come forward against Maine Catholic Diocese

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PORTLAND, Maine (WMTW) – More sexual abuse survivors are suing the Maine Catholic Diocese.

A civil complaint details claims from six additional victims of abuse allegedly committed by Father Lawrence Sabatino from 1958 to 1967.

Sabatino died in 1990.

The survivors join Ann Allen, who was the first to file a suit against Sabatino in December.

These lawsuits now total 20 against the Diocese by law firm Berman and Simmons.

They say the Diocese failed to warn parishioners and their families about the sexual abuse allegations against the priest.

Survivors speaking out now to ensure it doesn’t happen again.

“I never thought this affected my life, but it affected everything in my life. I’m 70 years old and I’m finally realizing and putting the pieces together,” said Patricia Butkowski.

“It’s so great to be with all of these brave women because I don’t feel alone anymore, and I hope they don’t either,” Ann Allen said.

The statute of limitations on older abuse cases in Maine was lifted in 2021.

Berman and Simmons said, prior to that ruling, these survivors had no legal path to hold the church and clergy accountable or to seek justice.

They say the diocese is appealing to the supreme court on the decision to lift the statute of limitations.

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1 comment

  1. The Roman Catholic Church has paid out billions in clergy abuse settlements, but the survivors keep coming forward, which reflects how long such abuse went on without proper attention.

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