Tag: Diocese of Norwich

Norwich Diocese bankruptcy Horowitz Law

Norwich Diocese Bankruptcy Filing Deadline is March 15

The deadline is rapidly approaching to file a claim in the Diocese of Norwich Bankruptcy.  

Don’t miss out on your last chance for justice.

Call us now. 

The filing deadline for all sexual abuse claims against the Diocese of Norwich is rapidly approaching. By March 15, 2022, anyone who believes they were the victim of sexual abuse, sexual harassment, or some other type of “sexualized interaction” with a priest, nun, brother, other cleric, employee, or volunteer of the Diocese of Norwich in Connecticut must file a claim with the bankruptcy court or be shut out from seeking justice forever.

Often referred to as a “bar date,” the strict March 15 filing deadline is one of the benefits that the Diocese receives from having filed a Chapter 11 bankruptcy petition last year.  The date is referred to as the “bar date” because all claims by creditors – including by people who were victims of sexual abuse by priests and other employees of the Diocese of Norwich – are forever barred from filing a lawsuit after that date.

Even if the Connecticut statute of limitations ever changes to allow previously-expired suits to be filed with the court, anyone with a claim against the Diocese of Norwich will be forbidden from filing a lawsuit against the Diocese because they missed the March 15 bankruptcy bar date.

This is, to put it plainly, your very last chance for accountability if you have been hurt by anyone associated with the Diocese of Norwich.

That is why it is critically important that you contact on of our experienced attorneys to discuss your legal rights and options, especially if you are not sure if the bar date applies to you.  The definition of potential claimants is very broad in a bankruptcy proceeding so that the largest number of survivors can be helped.  But it is very important that you contact us sooner rather than later so that we have ample time to prepare the best and most complete claim possible for you.

Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection is a tactic we have seen used all over the country by Roman Catholic dioceses and religious orders to protect itself.  The debtor-diocese receives the protection of the bar date, but also often escapes the public scrutiny of its secrets and coverups becoming public.  The priest personnel files and other relevant documents that a diocese may have to produce during regular litigation are often kept under lock and key by bankruptcy courts, never to be disclosed to the public. Make your voice heard now.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims of sexual abuse in the Diocese of Norwich in Connecticut.  The Diocese of Norwich filed for federal bankruptcy protection in 2021 and a federal judge has set the final filing deadline of March 15, 2022.  Our lawyers are now offering free legal consultations to discuss your legal options as a survivor of sexual abuse by priests and other employees of the Norwich Diocese.

Do not miss this final filing deadline.  Most victims of abuse will never be able to recover damages if they miss this deadline, so please contact us to discuss your case today.  Call us at (888) 283-9922 or send an e-mail to adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com.

Norwich Diocese bankruptcy Horowitz Law

Filing Deadline Set for Norwich Diocese Sexual Abuse Claims

A federal bankruptcy court judge has ordered all sexual abuse claims against the Diocese of Norwich in Connecticut to be filed no later than March 15, 2022.  This is a strict filing deadline referred to as a “bar date” because all claims against the Diocese of Norwich will be forever barred after that date.

The Diocese filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in July 2021 as it faced more than 60 lawsuits filed by young men who charge they were sexually assaulted as boys by Christian Brothers and other staff at the diocese-run Mount Saint John Academy in Deep River from 1990 to 2002. Mount Saint John was a residential school for troubled boys whose board of directors was headed by retired Bishop of Norwich Daniel Reilly. Since then, additional people whose sexual assault allegations involved not only Mount Saint John but Diocesan churches have filed claims in the bankruptcy case.

Horowitz Law is representing survivors of abuse throughout the Diocese of Norwich.

Contrary to what you might think, a bankruptcy filing does not mean the Diocese of Norwich is broke: it means the Diocese is asking for the Bankruptcy Court for help resolving the rest of the sexual abuse claims against it.  Its assets will be allocated among all of its creditors, including an unknown number of sexual abuse claimants who file claims by March 15, 2022.

It is also a means by which a Catholic Diocese can continue to protect itself and its secrets, and, for that reason it is often criticized by survivor advocates and attorneys.  The Diocese of Norwich will not likely have to publicize any priest personnel files as part of this process, for example.

Through our own investigation at Horowitz Law, we have identified at least 58 clergy who have been publicly accused of sexually abusing children in the Diocese of Norwich.

The March 15, 2022, filing is referred to as a “bar date” by the Bankruptcy Court because the Diocese will be forever immune from suit in any sexual abuse claim not filed by that date.  Survivors will never again have any chance for accountability after March 15, 2022, so it is critically important that you contact a lawyer today if you were harmed by an employee or volunteer in the Diocese of Norwich, including laypeople and teachers.  This also applies anyone sexually abused as an adult and the estates of deceased victims.

The March 15, 2022, deadline is a strict filing deadline set by the Court and will not likely be extended by the Court for any reason.  Therefore, you should contact us immediately for a free and confidential consultation about your legal options as a survivor of abuse in the Norwich Diocese.

Our attorneys have decades of experience representing victims of sexual abuse in the Catholic Church.  Contact us confidentially now.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims of sexual abuse in the Diocese of Norwich in Connecticut.  The Diocese of Norwich filed for federal bankruptcy protection in July 2021.  Our lawyers are now offering free legal consultations to discuss your legal options as a survivor of sexual abuse by priests and other employees of the Diocese of Norwich.  

Very strict filing deadlines have now been set by the Bankruptcy Court.  Most victims of abuse will never be able to recover damages if they miss this deadline, so please contact us to discuss your case today.  Call us at (888) 283-9922 or send an e-mail to adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com.

Fr. Robert Leo Pelkington – Diocese of Norwich

Father Robert Leo Pelkington 

Diocese of Norwich (Dominicans)

Robert Leo Pelkington  Diocese of Norwich Horowitz LawOrdained: 1968

Died: 2015

Assigned as follows:

  • 1970-1978: Providence College (Providence, RI)
  • 1979-1980: Jarrett House (Detroit, MI)
  • 1981-1983: St. Stephen Priory (Dover, MA)
  • 1984-1985: St. Vincent Ferrer Priory (New York, NY)
  • 1986: Holy Name of Jesus (Philadelphia, PA)
  • 1987-1991: St. Dominic’s (Washington, DC)
  • 1992: Thomas Aquinas (Zanesville, OH)
  • 1993-1994: St. Vincent Ferrer Priory (New York, NY
  • 1995: St. Mary’s Priory (New Haven, CT)
  • 1996-1998: Holy Name of Jesus (Valhalla, NY)
  • 1999-2001: Unknown
  • 2002-2011: St. Dominic Church & Priory (Washington DC)

Summary of Sexual Abuse Allegations against Father Robert Leo Pelkington: 

Fr. Robert Leo Pelkington was ordained a priest of the Dominican Order in 1968, who served in multiple parishes in the Diocese of Norwich. According to media reports, he turned himself into the police in 2000 after being charged with sexually abusing two minor boys who were brothers, between approximately 1998 and 1999. Pelkington reportedly abused the boys during visits to Southington, Connecticut, while he was working in the Archdiocese of New York.

Prior to his arrest, Pelkington was sent to St. Luke Institute, an institution known for treating priests accused of child sexual abuse. After accepting a plea deal, he was sentenced to a three-year suspended sentence and ten years of probation. In 2009, Pelkington was listed on the sex offender registry in Washington, D.C.

Pelkington’s name was included on the Dominicans St. Joseph Province’s 2018 list of credibly accused friars. It was also included on the Diocese of Norwich 2019 list and the Archdiocese of Hartford’s 2019 list of clergy credibly accused of child sexual abuse.

Pelkington’s status as a priest, whereabouts, and whether he had access to children from 2012 until his death are unknown. He died in 2015.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Diocese of Norwich in Connecticut.  If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in Connecticut, contact our office today. In July 2021, the Norwich Diocese filed for federal bankruptcy protection. The Court will resolve all claims of sexual abuse in this process but strict filing deadlines will apply and no late claims will be considered, so contact us today. Our lawyers have decades of experience representing survivors of clergy sexual abuse in Connecticut and nationwide. We can help.

Contact us at (888) 283-9922 or adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com to discuss your options today.

Fr. Felix Werpechowski – Diocese of Norwich

Father Felix Werpechowski 

Diocese of Norwich

Felix Werpechowski  Diocese of Norwich Horowitz LawOrdained: 1929

Retired: 1971

Died: 1972

Assigned as follows:

  • 1929: St. Mary’s (Middletown, CT)
  • 1931:Holy Cross (New Britain, CT)
  • 1934: Holy Name of Jesus (Stamford, CT)
  • 1937: St. Mary’s (Union City, NJ)
  • 1941: U.S. Army Chaplain (Camp Blanding, FL)
  • 1946: Holy Name of Jesus (Stamford, CT)
  • 1947: St. Thomas (Thomaston, CT)
  • 1948: St. Paul’s (Glenville, CT)
  • 1959: Holy Name of Jesus (Stamford, CT)

Summary of Sexual Abuse Allegations against Father Felix Werpechowski: 

Fr. Felix Werpechowski was ordained a priest in 1929, who served in multiple parishes in the Diocese of Norwich. According to a 2019 report commissioned by the diocese, there were three allegations of child sexual abuse of boys ranging from 5-14 years old, occurring between 1946-1951 while he was working at a parish in Stamford.

The first allegation accused Werpechowski of sexuallly abusing a 12-year-old boy from 1946-1949. Another allegation against the priest claimed he abused a 14-year-old boy, showing him pornography in the basement of a parish in 1950. The third allegation listed in the report claimed Werpechowski was determined to have assaulted a five-year-old boy in 1951 in Greenwich, Connecticut.

Werpechowski’s name was included on the Diocese of Norwich 2019 list with credible allegations of sexual abuse of a minor. He was also included on the Archdiocese of Hartford 2019 list.

Werpechowski resigned as pastor of Holy Name of Jesus in 1971, and died in 1972 before any claims against him were received.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Diocese of Norwich in Connecticut. If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in Connecticut, contact our office today. In July 2021, the Norwich Diocese filed for federal bankruptcy protection. The Court will resolve all claims of sexual abuse in this process but strict filing deadlines will apply and no late claims will be considered, so contact us today. Our lawyers have decades of experience representing survivors of clergy sexual abuse in Connecticut and nationwide. We can help.

Contact us at (888) 283-9922 or adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com to discuss your options today.

Fr. Paschal Thomas – Diocese of Norwich

Father Paschal Thomas 

Diocese of Norwich (Benedictines)

Paschal Thomas  Diocese of Norwich Horowitz LawOrdained: 1959

Died: 2015

Assigned as follows:

  • Conception Abbey (Conception, MO)
  • Conception Seminary College (Conception, MO)

Summary of Sexual Abuse Allegations against Father Paschal Thomas: 

Fr. Paschal Thomas, also listed as “Thomas Paschal”, was originally from India. He was ordained a monk in 1959, and served in the Diocese of Norwich. He joined the Benedictines in 1979, and coordinated a monthly sponsorship program of more than 5,500 children in India. He also worked at Conception Seminary College in various positions. According to media reports, an alleged child sexual abuse incident took place in Norwich, Connecticut in 1993.

Thomas’ name was included on the Diocese of Norwich 2019 list with credible allegations of sexual abuse of a minor. It only noted that he was reassigned by the Benedictines in 1993 after the incident in Connecticut. The priest’s name has also been included on the Conception Abbey Benedictines’ 2019 list. The list was compiled by retired FBI agents who reviewed the personnel files of all Abbey priests and brothers over the past 70 years. Information about the age/gender of Thomas’ alleged victim/victims, the nature of the alleged sexual abuse, or his assignments at the time of the alleged abuse is unknown.

Thomas died in October 2015 in Missouri.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Diocese of Norwich in Connecticut. If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in Connecticut, contact our office today. In July 2021, the Norwich Diocese filed for federal bankruptcy protection. The Court will resolve all claims of sexual abuse in this process but strict filing deadlines will apply and no late claims will be considered, so contact us today. Our lawyers have decades of experience representing survivors of clergy sexual abuse in Connecticut and nationwide. We can help.

Contact us at (888) 283-9922 or adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com to discuss your options today.

Fr. Patrick J. Sullivan – Diocese of Norwich

Father Patrick Sullivan 

Diocese of Norwich (Trappists)

Patrick Sullivan  Diocese of Norwich Horowitz LawOrdained: 1954

Laicized: 1970

Assigned as follows:

  • St. Columba Parish (CT)

Summary of Sexual Abuse Allegations against Father Patrick Sullivan: 

Fr. Patrick Sullivan was ordained a Trappist priest in 1954, who served in the Diocese of Norwich. According to media reports, in 2002, a woman filed a civil lawsuit in which she alleged that Fr. Sullivan repeatedly abused her for two years at various locations including the St. Columba rectory from 1968-1969, beginning when she was 15 years old. The case went to trial, and in 2003, the court dismissed some of the lawsuits, but allowed the remainder to go forward. 

Sullivan was laicized in 1970.

Sullivan’s name was included on the Diocese of Norwich 2019 list of clergy credibly accused of child sexual abuse.

His current whereabouts and whether he has access to children are unknown.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Diocese of Norwich in Connecticut. If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in Connecticut, contact our office today. In July 2021, the Norwich Diocese filed for federal bankruptcy protection. The Court will resolve all claims of sexual abuse in this process but strict filing deadlines will apply and no late claims will be considered, so contact us today. Our lawyers have decades of experience representing survivors of clergy sexual abuse in Connecticut and nationwide. We can help.

Contact us at (888) 283-9922 or adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com to discuss your options today.

Fr. George St. Jean – Diocese of Norwich

Father George St. Jean 

Diocese of Norwich (Oblates)

George St. Jean  Diocese of Norwich Horowitz LawOrdained: Unknown

Left Diocese: 1962

Died: 1982

Assigned as follows:

  • St. Brendan’s Parish (Colebrook, NH)

Summary of Sexual Abuse Allegations against Father George St. Jean: 

Fr. George St. Jean was a member of the Missionary Oblate of Mary Immaculate Order.
He served in parishes in the Diocese of Manchester, New Hampshire and in the Diocese of Norwich. According to media reports, in 2004, a man alleged he was sexually abused by St. Jean at the priests’ family camp in Massachusetts when he was a child. According to the New Hampshire Attorney General’s Audit Records, in 2008, the sister of the same victim that reported the abuse years prior went to make another report to the Oblates. 

In 2010, St. Jean was named in two child sexual abuse lawsuits, both of which were settled in 2012. In the first suit, the victim claimed he was repeatedly abused by St. Jean for four years starting when he was 9 years old. The abuse is said to have taken place at St. Brendan’s Parish in Colebrook, NH when the victim was an altar boy. The plaintiff was murdered in 2011 before the settlement was finalized in 2012.

In the second suit, a man alleged St. Jean repeatedly sexually abused him when he was an 11-year-old altar boy in 1967 and 1968 at St. Brendan’s Parish in Colebrook, NH.

St. Jean’s name was included on the Diocese of Norwich 2019 list of clergy credibly accused of child sexual abuse. It noted he left the diocese in 1962.

St. Jean died in 1982.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Diocese of Norwich in Connecticut. If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in Connecticut, contact our office today. In July 2021, the Norwich Diocese filed for federal bankruptcy protection. The Court will resolve all claims of sexual abuse in this process but strict filing deadlines will apply and no late claims will be considered, so contact us today. Our lawyers have decades of experience representing survivors of clergy sexual abuse in Connecticut and nationwide. We can help.

Contact us at (888) 283-9922 or adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com to discuss your options today.

Fr. Eugene Solega – Diocese of Norwich

Father Eugene Solega

Diocese of Norwich

Eugene Solega Diocese of Norwich Horowitz LawOrdained: 1941

Died: 1985

Assigned as follows:

  • 1941-1949: St. Joseph Parish (Rockville, CT)
  • 1949-1960: St. Mary’s Church (Middletown, CT)
  • 1960-1969: St. Bridget Church (Moodus, CT)
  • 1969-Unknown: St. John’s (Old Saybrook, CT)

Summary of Sexual Abuse Allegations against Father Eugene Solega:

Fr. Eugene Solega was ordained a priest in 1941, and came to St. John’s in Old Saybrook  in the Diocese of Norwich in 1969. According to media reports, in 2018, the priest was accused of sexually abusing a former 13-year-old altar boy at St. John’s in Old Saybrook, Connecticut. In 2018, the victim and his therapist had a meeting with Bishop Cote, in which he constantly apologized. The therapist later asked in writing for financial assistance for her client who needed “intensive residential treatment for the abuse, alcoholism and other mental health issues that he has struggled with for much of his life.” As of 2019, the bishop has still not responded.

Fr. Solega’s name was not included on the Diocese of Norwich 2019 list of clergy credibly accused of child sexual abuse. 

Fr. Solega died in 1985.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Diocese of Norwich in Connecticut. If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in Connecticut, contact our office today. In July 2021, the Norwich Diocese filed for federal bankruptcy protection. The Court will resolve all claims of sexual abuse in this process but strict filing deadlines will apply and no late claims will be considered, so contact us today. Our lawyers have decades of experience representing survivors of clergy sexual abuse in Connecticut and nationwide. We can help.

Contact us at (888) 283-9922 or adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com to discuss your options today.

Fr. Thomas W. Shea – Diocese of Norwich

Father Thomas Shea

Diocese of Norwich

Thomas Shea Diocese of Norwich Horowitz LawOrdained: 1946

Removed: 1984

Died: 2006

Assigned as follows:

  • 1946: Catholic girls summer camp (New Hartford, CT)
  • 1946-1949: St. Mary’s (Simsbury, CT), Our Lady of Perpetual Help (Washington Depot, CT); Holy Angels (South Meriden, CT)
  • 1950-1953: St. Bernard’s (Rockville, CT)
  • 1953: St. John the Evangelist (Montville, CT)
  • 1954-1957: St. Mary Star of the Sea (New London, CT)
  • 1958-1962: St. Patrick’s (Mystic, CT)
  • 1963-1968: St. Stephen’s (Putnam, CT)
  • 1969-1972: Our Lady of Lourdes (Gales Ferry, CT)
  • Mary Mother of the Redeemer in Groton and St. Peter’s in Higganum, CT
  • 1973-1975 Sick Leave; St. John’s (Norwich, CT)
  • 1976-1978: St. Joseph’s and Sisters of Mercy School (New London, CT)
  • 1982-1983: St. John the Apostle; Daughters of the Holy Ghost School (Plainfield, CT)
  • 1985-1997 Retired
  • 1998-2004: St. Mary Home (West Hartford, CT)

Summary of Sexual Abuse Allegations against Father Thomas Shea:

Fr. Thomas Shea was ordained a priest in 1946, who served in multiple parishes in the Diocese of Norwich. According to media reports, in 2004, he was accused of molesting at least 16 girls in 11 different parishes over the span of 30 years. The abuse was often recorded as “prolonged kissing” and not as sexual abuse. Parents reportedly complained about the abuse and as a result, Shea was transferred.

In 2005, the Vatican refused to laicize Shea. He died in 2006.

In 2008, one woman’s claim was settled. Another woman’s suit was settled for $1.1 million in September 2012, just before trial was to begin.

One of the victims was allegedly abused from 1969 to 1971 when she was 10 to 12 years old. The abuse is said to have occurred at Our Lady of Lourdes in Gales Ferry, Connecticut.

In 2019, Shea’s name was included on the Diocese of Norwich list with credible allegations of sexual abuse of a minor. It noted he was removed from ministry in 1984.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Diocese of Norwich in Connecticut. If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in Connecticut, contact our office today. In July 2021, the Norwich Diocese filed for federal bankruptcy protection. The Court will resolve all claims of sexual abuse in this process but strict filing deadlines will apply and no late claims will be considered, so contact us today. Our lawyers have decades of experience representing survivors of clergy sexual abuse in Connecticut and nationwide. We can help.

Contact us at (888) 283-9922 or adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com to discuss your options today.

Fr. Robert E. Shea – Diocese of Norwich

Father Robert Shea

Diocese of Norwich

Robert E. Shea Diocese of Norwich Horowitz Law

Ordained: 1941

Retired: 1992

Died: 1995

Assigned as follows:

  • St. Mary (Portland, CT)
  • St. Patrick (Thompsonville, CT) 
  • St. Mary (New Britain, CT) 
  • St. Patrick (Waterbury, CT) 

Summary of Sexual Abuse Allegations against Father Robert Shea:

Fr. Robert Shea was ordained to the priesthood in 1941, and served in multiple parishes in the Diocese of Norwich. According to media reports, in 2019, his name was included on the Diocese of Norwich list of clergy credibly accused of child sexual abuse. His name also appeared on the Archdiocese of Hartford list under the heading: “List Of Archdiocese Of Hartford Clergy Who Have Been The Objects Of Legal Settlements Or Otherwise Credibly Accused Of Sexual Abuse Of A Minor From 1953 To The Present – Priests/Transitional Deacon Of The Archdiocese Of Hartford.” Information about the age/gender of his alleged victim/victims, the nature of the alleged sexual abuse, or Shea’s assignments at the time of the alleged abuse is unknown.

Fr. Robert Shea retired in 1992, and died in 1995 before any claims against him were received.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Diocese of Norwich in Connecticut. If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in Connecticut, contact our office today. In July 2021, the Norwich Diocese filed for federal bankruptcy protection. The Court will resolve all claims of sexual abuse in this process but strict filing deadlines will apply and no late claims will be considered, so contact us today. Our lawyers have decades of experience representing survivors of clergy sexual abuse in Connecticut and nationwide. We can help.

Contact us at (888) 283-9922 or adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com to discuss your options today.