The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests
SNAP Press Statement
For immediate release: Tuesday, August 9, 2011
SNAP applauds brave victim and his new lawsuit
Statement by David Clohessy of St. Louis, Executive Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests (314.566.9790, SNAPclohessy@aol.com)
Our hearts go out to Kenneth Hills as he seeks justice and healing for his boyhood suffering. The story of Marshall's traumatized victims shows how the damage of childhood abuse leaves many victims unable to begin recovery until much later in life.
We urge anybody who sees, suffers, or suspects sexual abuse to contact secular authorities, no matter how old or insignificant the information seems. There are survivors like Mr. Hills everywhere who need help exposing the truth.
(SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, is the world’s oldest and largest support group for clergy abuse victims. We’ve been around for 23 years and have more than 10,000 members. Despite the word “priest” in our title, we have members who were molested by religious figures of all denominations, including nuns, rabbis, bishops, and Protestant ministers. Our website is SNAPnetwork.org)
Contact - David Clohessy (314-566-9790 cell, SNAPclohessy@aol.com), Barbara Blaine (312-399-4747, SNAPblaine@gmail.com), Peter Isely (414-429-7259, firstname.lastname@example.org), Barbara Dorris (314-862-7688 home, 314-503-0003 cell, SNAPdorris@gmail.com)
Victim of Rev. Marshall's abuse sues for $4.75M
73-year-old claims repression, denial and guilt
Convicted serial molester Rev. William Hodgson Marshall, who taught at Windsor high schools, and his religious order are being sued for nearly $5 million by a former student of Marshall’s.
Kenneth Hills, a 73-year-old who attended St. Michael’s College School in Toronto in the early 1950s, said the priest’s attacks on him began when he was a member of the midget basketball team and Marshall was the coach.
Hills, an author and retired teacher, said he’s suing because the congregation of St. Basil failed to protect him and others from Marshall who was responsible for their care.
Marshall, 90, was sentenced in June to two years in jail after pleading guilty to 17 counts of indecent assault that spanned 40 years. Sixteen of the victims, including Hills, were boys Marshall abused as a teacher and coach at schools in Windsor, Sudbury and Toronto. One victim was female.
In the 1950s, Marshall taught at Assumption College in Windsor and was later principal there and at Holy Names High School.
Hills said he would like the Catholic hierarchy to adopt a zero-tolerance policy towards pedophilia and defrock any clergy who commits the crime.
The assualts, he said, caused him to develop pyschological coping methods including denial, repression, disassociation and guilt.
During court, nearly all of Marshall’s victims told of lives lived with psychological issues, addictions, failed marriages and strained relationships with friends and family.
Many said they’ve attempted suicide and some have criminal records. Many have been diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder triggered by the abuse at Marshall’s hands.
Hills is claiming $3 million in general damages, $1.5 million in special damages and $250,000 in aggravated damages.
Rev. Timothy Scott, a spokesperson for the Basilians, said his order acknowledges Marshall’s actions were criminal when he was acting as a Basilian priest and they will deal with liability issues as they present themselves.
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Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests