Former altar boy sues Archdiocese over abuse allegations

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GUILFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — A 49-year-old, former altar boy at St. George Catholic Church in Guilford, is suing the Archdiocese of Hartford, alleging he was molested by the former parish priest Daniel McSheffery.

Starting at the age of 9 and continuing until he was 14, the victim alleges in the lawsuit that the “…abuse took place in the St. George rectory (and) on the St. George altar after McSheffery would lock the doors to the church.” And that McSheffery told him, “What we’re doing is okay, there’s nothing to be ashamed of and no one would believe you anyway. It’s our secret.”

McSheffery died in 2014. The lawyer who filed the suit told News 8 the victim was robbed of his adolescent years by the abuse that McSheffery was charismatic, larger than life and used his influence for evil.

In a statement, New Haven attorney Thomas MacNamara said:

“McSheffery was one of Connecticut’s most cunning and deceitful child sexual abusers ever to wear a Roman collar. Parishioners hung on his every word and he used his charisma to inflict lifelong harm on the most defenseless in the St. George community.”

The Archdiocese of Hartford said they would not comment on pending litigation. In 2005, $22 million was paid out to settle lawsuits of abuse by several priests, including McSheffery.

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