Pennsylvania Record

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

Former St. Joseph Parish student says teacher sexually assaulted him in sixth and seventh grades

State Court

By Charmaine Little | Aug 13, 2019

St. Joseph Parish

PITTSBURGH - On June 8, a Pennsylvania man who requested anonymity took legal action against the St. Joseph Parish and the Roman Catholic Diocese of Pittsburgh, accusing a male teacher of sexual assault. 

He filed the lawsuit in the Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County, Pennsylvania.

The plaintiff went to St. Joseph between first and eighth grades. He said while there, a teacher, called John Doe in the lawsuit, sexually assaulted him. At the time, he was in sixth grade, from 1975 to 1976, and in seventh grade, from 1976 to 1977.

“John Doe would approach plaintiff as he sat at his desk and sexually assault him. The sexual assault always occurred while the students were working individually, on tests, readings, or other assignments, while their focus was on their individual work. John Doe would wait until all of the students were engaged with their own work before he approached plaintiff,” the lawsuit reads.

The accuser said John Doe often kissed him on his head, inappropriately touched him on his genitals and “forced the then-elementary school-aged plaintiff to unwillingly engage in the sexual conduct on multiple occasions,” according to the lawsuit.

He described the teacher as a big man who was intimidating and often yelled while slamming doors and throwing objects such as chairs. He said he’s not the only one who was sexually assaulted. 

He said he told the principal, Sister Annalita Fox, but she didn’t believe him and ordered him and the other alleged victims to “confess their ‘sins’ to Father Walter Demblowsky,” according to the lawsuit. They were later forced to confess in a cry room.

He said that he still experiences intimacy problems and has issues with post-traumatic stress disorder and severe anxiety. He’s suing for negligence, fraud, constructive fraud, conspiracy and fraudulent concealment.

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