A Superior Court jury decided Friday morning that the Catholic Archdiocese of Hartford had been reckless and negligent in allowing a priest the church knew to be a pedophile to have access to children and that a former altar boy the priest sexually abused three decades ago should receive $1 million in damages.
The now-adult victim, identified in his suit as Jacob Doe, said the verdict validates "that things that occurred in the past were not my fault or the fault of any of the victims. …This is the most important part of my healing process."
Doe added: "This predator was placed in a position where he could harm me and my friend. … I'm hoping that other victims can begin their healing process, and the church does the right thing going forward."
Doe said the church viciously attacked him and, by extension, his family in defending against the lawsuit, and that the support of his family got him "through this."
"My family and my attorney — without them I would not be where I am in my healing process," Doe said.
He said he no longer goes to church but will explore whether that will change, in consultation with the woman he called his best friend. He said he has not lost his faith.
"I don't go to church," Doe said, "but if anything, my faith is stronger."
The victim's father, a former church deacon who testif...
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