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Seattle: Trial involving notorious abusive priest begins

May 05, 2009

Jury selection will soon begin in a lawsuit against the Archdiocese of Seattle, which is accused of failing to supervise Father Patrick O’Donnell, who has admitted molesting 30 boys. The priest, who later practiced psychology, reportedly wrote a thesis entitled, “A Prisoner’s Dilemma: Evoking Trust Between Children and Adults.” According to’s database of publicly accused priests:

Removed 1985. Abused as many as 65 boys in mid 1970s and early 1980s in Spokane & Seattle. After leaving active priesthood, he worked as a psychologist for teens & adults at a clinic in Bellevue. Sanctioned in 1984 for abuse when he was a priest. Sanctions lifted 1986. License permanently suspended 1/04. At least 2 victims committed suicide. Trained by the Sulpicians. Named in new suit filed 2/08 by 3. Admitted guilt and settled 11/08 for $5M which he can’t pay.


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