Judge: Baton Rouge diocese, area Catholic priest to remain in suit involving confessional
By Joe Gyan Jr., August 21, 2017, The Advocate
A state judge refused Monday to dismiss the Roman Catholic Diocese of Baton Rouge and a priest from a 2009 lawsuit by a woman who says that when she was a teenager she told the priest she was being sexually abused by a church parishioner, but he did not stop or report the alleged abuse.
District Judge Mike Caldwell said it will be up to an East Baton Rouge Parish jury to decide whether what Rebecca Mayeux allegedly told Father Jeff Bayhi in the confessional was in fact a confession as defined by the Catholic Church, and therefore confidential, or whether she was merely seeking support and guidance instead of confessing sins.
Caldwell and a state appeals court both ruled last year that Mayeux can tell a jury what she allegedly told Bayhi in the confessional.