Youngstown Diocese Settles Sex Abuse Case Against Priest for $8M
The late Brother Stephen Baker worked as an athletic director at two Ohio high schools where he was accused of molestating students.
The Youngstown diocese and 88 former students have agreed to settle their sexual molestation cases against a deceased Ohio Franciscan friar, who was also a high school athletic trainer, for $8 million.
Brother Stephen Baker worked at Bishop McCort High School in Johnstown from 1992-2001 and at Warren’s John F. Kennedy High School from 1986-1990, according to an Associated Press report. He committed suicide at his monastery in Newry in January 2013 by stabbing himself in the heart, days after the Youngstown diocese disclosed settlements with 11 students who said they were abused at Warren’s John F. Kennedy High School.
“I’ve filed claims against child predators who have had multiple victims, but this certainly was a predator that was prolific, and the position he was given as an athletic trainer allowed him to have such easy access to young people,” said Altoona, Penn. attorney Richard Serbin, who represents 13 ex-Bishop McCourt students.
Boston’s Michael Garabedian, the lawyer for 33 students, said the victims settled for amounts between $60,000 and $120,000 each, depending how long they were abused and the impact it has had on their lives.
“The settlements will help the victims gain a degree of closure and assist them in trying to heal from these terrible acts of sexual abuse,” said Garabedian in the Associated Press report.
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