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caption: The main cathedral for the Seattle Archdiocese is the St. James Cathedral.
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The main cathedral for the Seattle Archdiocese is the St. James Cathedral.

Seattle Archdiocese to pay $3 million to settle multiple sex abuse cases

The Archdiocese of Seattle has settled five sexual abuse claims for a total of $3 million. The alleged abuse in these cases span the 1960s through the early 1980s.

One of the claims accused Brother C.P. Ryan and Brother Albert Casale of the Christian Brothers of Ireland, in addition to other unnamed members of the congregation of sexual abuse in the early 1960s. The alleged abuse occured when the Christian Brothers operated the Briscoe Memorial School in Kent. Ryan is deceased and Casale’s status is unknown, according to a statement released by the Archdiocese on Friday.

A second case accused Christian Brother Gerald Kealy, now deceased, of sexual abuse at O’Dea High School in Seattle in the 1960s.

Two of the settlements involve sexual abuse allegations against Father Thomas Pitsch, who was pastor of St. Patrick Parish in Tacoma at the time. Pitsch died in 1978 and had not been publicly accused of sexual abuse while alive, according to the Archdiocese.

Also settled was a claim of sexual abuse allegedly occurring between 1978 and 1980 by an unnamed playground official at St. Louise School in Bellevue. The lawsuit in that case accuses the Archdiocese of employing “a known male sexual predator” who was “allowed to have continuous and unfettered access” to the female student in question, who was roughly 8 years old at the time.

Since 2016, the Archdiocese has publicly shared a list of credibly accused clergy and religious officials who have worked within its ranks. Additionally, the institution has published various resources, including information about training and sexual abuse prevention measures it is taking.

The Archdiocese also operates a sexual abuse helpline that can be reached at 800-446-7762.