Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Fourth suit accuses retired Christian Brother of sex abuse

Fourth suit accuses retired Christian Brother of sex abuse
A Roman Catholic brother already faces abuse charges from incidents in the 1960s and '70s.

By JEFF STRICKLER, Star Tribune

Last update: September 15, 2009 - 11:43 PM

A Roman Catholic brother already accused of sexual abuse in three lawsuits this year was named in a fourth suit announced Tuesday.

The suit, filed in Ramsey County Court, says Brother Charles Anthony (Raimond) Rose, a member of the Chicago-based Christian Brothers of the Midwest, "engaged in unpermitted, harmful and offensive sexual conduct" with a 15-year-old Cretin High School student on a field trip to Chicago in 1969 or 1970. Rose was a teacher at the St. Paul school at the time.

The suit was announced by Bob Schwiderski, Minnesota director of the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP). With each suit announced, Schwiderski said he hopes the news will spur other victims of the accused to break their silence.

That's "exactly what is happening in this case," he said.

Asked whether he expects more suits against Rose, Schwiderski said, "yes." He would not say how many he expects, but said, "I've talked to literally dozens of people" who either have accused Rose of abuse or know of potential victims.

The first suit, filed in February, accused Rose of molesting a student in 1966, while he was teaching at DeLaSalle High School in Minneapolis.

A suit filed in May accused him of similar acts while teaching at Cretin in 1970. In June, a second Cretin graduate filed suit, alleging abuse in 1968. A related lawsuit against the Christian Brothers organization accuses Rose's supervisors of allowing him to keep teaching after they learned about his behavior.

The suits followed a 2003 California case against Rose by a former student that was settled out of court for $1.1 million.

Rose is retired and living in Chicago. In addition to DeLaSalle and Cretin, Rose taught at Archbishop Brady High School in West St. Paul and high schools in Fargo, and Stevens Point, Wis. He also worked at the Red Wing Juvenile Correctional Facility.

Schwiderski was joined at the news conference by Suzanne Severson, co-moderator of the Twin Cities steering council of Voice of the Faithful, a Roman Catholic lay group. Rose was a history teacher at Brady when she was a sophomore in the 1973-74 school year. She called on any of her classmates who might have been abused by Rose to report it.

Brother Francis Carr, provincial of the Christian Brothers' district office in Illinois, was out of the office Monday and was not aware of the suit, so he could not comment on it specifically. But he said the organization affirms a statement issued earlier in which it said, "The abuse of any child is an affront to our mission and purpose, and we do not and will not tolerate such abuse."

Because the latest suit involved taking a minor across state lines, Schwiderski hopes criminal charges will be filed.

The Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis is not a defendant in any of the suits. Although the local high schools operate under the auspices of the archdiocese, it has no institutional control over the faculty.





Schwiderski was joined at the news conference by Suzanne Severson, co-moderator of the Twin Cities steering council of Voice of the Faithful, a Roman Catholic lay group. Rose was a history teacher at Brady when she was a sophomore in the 1973-74 school year. She called on any of her classmates who might have been abused by Rose to report it.
Brother Francis Carr, provincial of the Christian Brothers' district office in Illinois, was out of the office Monday and was not aware of the suit, so he could not comment on it specifically. But he said the organization affirms a statement issued earlier in which it said, "The abuse of any child is an affront to our mission and purpose, and we do not and will not tolerate such abuse."
Because the latest suit involved taking a minor across state lines, Schwiderski hopes criminal charges will be filed.
The Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis is not a defendant in any of the suits. Although the local high schools operate under the auspices of the archdiocese, it has no institutional control over the faculty.

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