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Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests - Tennessee




Local man claims abuse at hands of ex-priest

Local man claims abuse at hands of ex-priest

Managing Editor

Minnesota attorney seeks others ‘to get them some help'

INDIANAPOLIS - An ex-priest described as a “prolific molester” of young boys will face civil-court actions in Indianapolis that will involve one Tell City man, according to the lawyer representing several victims.

As of last week, Minnesota attorney Patrick Noaker had filed complaints on behalf of four “John Does” who allegedly suffered sexual abuse at the hands of the former Rev. Harry E. Monroe. Noaker said Thursday he expected to file another suit this week based on allegations from a Tell City resident.

In addition to Monroe, officials from the Catholic Archdiocese of Indianapolis are named as defendants because they allegedly knew the priest was a child molester when they moved him from “a high-profile church in Indianapolis to a lower-profile church in Terre Haute ... and he molested kids there,” Noaker said.

The archdiocese then “moved him to Tell City, a small little berg, and he ended up molesting children there,” the lawyer continued. The idea that church officials thought they could hide the allegedly abusive priest in a small town “offends me a lot,” he said, explaining he grew up in a small Indiana town, “and those could have been my friends” (molested).

Noaker said the Tell City victim's identity is also being withheld because he is “horrified that people might find out” what was done to him.

Church leaders told members of one community the priest would no longer be a threat to children.

“The folks in Terre Haute were told he'd be taken out of ministry,” Noaker told The News.

Monroe's whereabouts are unknown and a call to his attorney Friday was not returned. The archdiocese office was closed Friday, so the News was unable to seek comment from them.

Nellie Peter, secretary at St. Paul Church in Tell City, confirmed Friday Monroe is included in a list of resident pastors for St. Michael Church in Cannelton, and served there from 1982 to '84. “I can't say for sure he was at St. Paul, but I do admit we don't have a good history for St. Paul,” she said.

Noaker continues to compile information about Monroe and said he's interested in hearing from anyone who might have information about the ex-priest's activities - people who were abused or knew about abuse. He understands people are often reluctant to report this kind of crime because it's sexual in nature and because of the homosexual aspect, but “we've got to get them some help, get them counselors,” he said.

Noaker can be reached at (651) 227-9990 or by writing to Patrick Noaker, Attorney at Law; 332 Minnesota St., Suite E-1000; St. Paul MN 55101.