First Lawsuit Under New Law for Child Sex Abuse Claims

(Note: The following excerpt from an article by Associated Press writer Jennifer Sinco Kelleher appeared in the Star-Advertiser on 26 May 2012. For more about the law, which was introduced by Senator Shimabukuro, see “Child Sex Abuse Bill Signed into Law on 4/24/12″ and “NY Times Editorial Refers to Child Sex Abuse Bill Introduced by Sen. Shimabukuro.”)

Former Damien Chaplain Sued Over Sexual Abuse Allegations
By Jennifer Sinco Kelleher (AP)

Attorneys have filed a lawsuit on behalf of a man alleging sexual abuse by a priest at a Hono­lulu all-boys Catholic school in the 1980s.

The lawsuit, filed Thursday in Oahu Circuit Court, claims the then-13-year-old boy was a freshman when he was abused during an overnight retreat by the Rev. Gerald Funcheon, a former chaplain and teacher at Damien Memorial School.

The lawsuit doesn’t name the plaintiff, now an adult living in Hono­lulu.

This is the first lawsuit under a new Hawaii law providing a two-year window for claims of sexual abuse against minors to be made, even if the statute of limitations has lapsed, said Joelle Casteix, western regional director for Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests. The two-year window began April 24, when Gov. Neil Abercrombie signed it into law.

Click here to read the rest of the article on the Star-Advertiser site.

Update 6.14.12 by CT: Another Suit Filed Alleging Priest Abuse in Hawaii (Hawaii News Now 6.13.12).

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