Payouts don't always bring healing, clergy abuse victim says
Bob Rich was in his 20s when he won an $850,000 settlement from the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis — compensation for years of sexual abuse at the hands of the Rev. Robert Michael Thurner.
Rich and his family were hopeful the lawsuit, settled in 1992, would bring closure. But within four years, the money was gone. Some Rich gave away. Some went to a California beach house and a Porsche. Some he used to fuel a cocaine habit — an effort, he said, to ease the pain.
More than 20 years later, hundreds of survivors of clergy sexual abuse have filed claims against the archdiocese. Many were urged forward by the 2013 Minnesota Child Victims Act, which extended the statute of limitations for civil claims in child sex abuse cases.