By MICHAEL TARM, Sep. 26, 2016, The Big Story, AP.org
CHICAGO (AP) — A 51-year-old Colorado man who says he was sexually abused when he was around 7 years old by a teenager who later became a prominent Roman Catholic priest — one known for his work with at-risk kids — on Monday sued the Chicago-based religious order to which the priest belongs, seeking the release of all records related to allegations of abuse by any of its priests.
Eric Johnson's lawsuit names the Claretians Missionaries, a 165-year-old order that has around 3,000 priests and brothers in about 60 countries, as the defendant. The suit filed in Cook County Circuit Court says that Father Bruce Wellems was around 15 when the abuse occurred in the early 1970s. Johnson says the abuse occurred over about a year.