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The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests

SNAP Press Release

Cleric ordered to pay $500,000

He’s accused of abusing dozens of boys

Man worked at Catholic schools in 3 states

Despite multiple lawsuits & settlements, he walks free

This is the only formal court finding of predator’s guilt

He “pled the Fifth” dozens of times in a sworn deposition

In unusual move, victim settled with church but went after offender as an individual

Holding signs and childhood photos at a sidewalk news conference, clergy sex abuse victims will disclose and discuss a highly unusual $500,000 court order against a notorious serial child molesting cleric who
--- is accused of drugging and sexually abusing dozens of boys in three states,
--- has never before been deemed guilty in court, and
--- still walks free today.

The victims will also
---blast his church superiors for “mean-spirited” legal tactics and
---beg others who saw, suspected or suffered his crimes to call police.

TODAY, Thursday, Aug. 26, 1:30 p.m.

Outside Marianists headquarters 4425 West Pine Blvd. (near corner of Newstead Ave.) in St. Louis’ CWE

A Columbia man who won the judgment and was molested at knifepoint by the cleric, along with several clergy abuse victims who belong to a support group called SNAP, Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests

Three weeks ago, a St. Louis county judge awarded $500,000 to Bryan Bacon of Columbia who was sexually assaulted at Vianney High School by Brother William C. Mueller. Mueller faces accusations that he molested dozens of kids in Texas, Colorado and Missouri during a long career teaching at parochial schools (including Chaminade and St. Mary’s here, where he was once the principal).

The judgment comes months after a contested court hearing at which Mueller’s lawyers argued he wasn’t liable for Bacon’s abuse and that the statute of limitations on any such crime had long expired. The judge ruled, however, that Bacon’s case was timely under a state law that allows for repressed memories. SNAP supports the judge’s more flexible interpretation of Missouri’s repressed memory law, especially in cases (like this one) in which the predator’s employer knew of his dangerous and hurtful actions much earlier but kept him around children anyway.

Despite dozens of civil lawsuits being settled against/involving Mueller, this case is the first time a court anywhere has formally deemed Mueller guilty of child sex crimes.

The agreement was premised on Mueller's claim that he has no assets. If that claim proves to be false, then Bacon will work to enforce the judgment and collect the money.

The two page order, issued on 8/4 by Judge Barbara Wallace of Division 13, is signed by Clayton attorneys Ken Chackes (314 872 8420) for Bacon and Martin Hadican for Mueller (314 863 0500). (Copies will be provided.)

In May, another St. Louis man filed a similar lawsuit in St. Louis city court (MH v. Mueller et al), against the Marianists, alleging he was molested at St. Mary’s High School here. It has received no public attention. St. Louis church officials are trying to have it tossed out on the statute of limitations, a legal tactic which SNAP deplores as “trying to exploit a legal technicality, instead of fighting on the merits of the case.”

Just three years ago, the same St. Louis Catholic officials tried to force 20 of Mueller’s alleged child sex abuse victims to disclose their names in litigation in Colorado.

Mueller worked first at Vianney (1962-66), next at St. Mary’s (1981-83), was then sent to a center for pedophile priests, was then transferred back to Vianney (1984-86), then back to the New Mexico treatment center. For years, he belonged to a St. Louis-based religious order called the Marianists. In 1986, he resigned from the Marianists.

Mueller, now 71, lives in San Antonio TX. SNAP believes he could still face criminal charges for his crimes.

David Clohessy314 566 9790 cell ([email protected]), Barbara Dorris 314 503 0003 cell

Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests