An ongoing lawsuit against the Diocese of Orange, a former priest and the All-American Boys Chorus highlights a situation that many children have sadly been forced into. While it shows that coming forward with your story is a difficult and emotional process, it also demonstrates how seeking justice can be very rewarding.
Former choir member comes forward
A former member of the All-American Boys Chorus has come forward with allegations that he was sexually abused by a former priest in Costa Mesa. The former priest directed the chorus.
The lawsuit says the victim was 10 years old when the abuse began. Like many survivors, he suppressed the experience due to fear, shame, confusion and other complex emotions. Now an adult, the plaintiff found help through counseling and chose to come forward.
As is common in such situations, the priest has a long history of allegations of abuse being leveled against him, beginning in 1957. Despite being aware of these allegations, the Diocese of Orange allowed him to lead the All-American Boys Chorus.
What to know about filing a lawsuit
Choosing to file a lawsuit against an abuser is not easy. However, many survivors of child sexual abuse find it to be an ultimately positive experience. Here are some important things to know about filing a lawsuit:
- You can file anonymously. This means your name will never be mentioned in the lawsuit and, therefore, will never be part of the public record.
- Your attorney will deal with most of the legal aspects for you.They will deal with questions, negotiations and strive to protect you throughout the process.
- You can protect others from abuse. Coming forward through a lawsuit can help ensure that an abuser is no longer able to hurt others. Choosing to file a lawsuit can also encourage other survivors to share their stories, whether they are about the same abuser or someone else.
Filing a lawsuit against an abuser is an extremely personal decision that no one should be forced into making. For some, however, telling their story is a powerful way to find relief and seek justice for the wrong that was done to them.