Kentucky court dismisses suit by parish employee who was fired after reporting priest-abuser
CWN - May 17, 2011
A Kentucky court has dismissed the lawsuit of the former accountant for a Catholic parish, who said that she had been fired because she reported that a priest who had been disciplined for sexual abuse was in residence at the parish.
Judge Mitch Perry ruled that the lawsuit by Margie Weiter was not within his court's jurisdiction, since it involved the internal process by which the Catholic Church disciplines clerics. The judge also observed that the case did not directly involve sexual abuse of children, but the presence in the parish of a priest previously accused of abuse.
The Louisville archdiocese applauded the court's ruling. Archdiocesan officials claim that Weiter was dismissed because of budgetary concerns, not because she complained about the presence of the abusive priest.
The Weiter case involved two noteworthy coincidences. Weiter's husband Gary was a successful plaintiff in a sex-abuse lawsuit brought against the Louisville diocese, which ended in a settlement in 2003. And one of the members of the parish council at the time of Weiter's dismissal was a former priest who had been convicted of raping a teenager.
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