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Abuse by priests: Johnstown man speaks out ‘to prevent this from happening to another child’

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Shaun Dougherty’s father died nearly two years ago.

The funeral took place at St. Clement Church on Lindberg Avenue, where the large Catholic family gathered to grieve the loss of a loved one.

But Dougherty’s mind was also wracked by another emotional trauma. He claims that decades ago, when he was attending St. Clement School, a priest and trusted member of the community sexually abused him.

“My father passed away, October 2014 – first time I was in St. Clement Church since my sister’s May crowning in the late ’80s,” Dougherty said during an interview at The Tribune-Democrat on Tuesday.

“They haven’t changed it much. Thank God it was a funeral, because I cried the entire time, and it wasn’t because my dad had passed away.

 

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1 in 5 New York Kids Are Sexually Abused. Help Prevent That

The CDC reports that 1 in 5 children are sexually abused.

9 out of 10 of the perpetrators are never brought to justice and never appear on sex offender registries.

They are protected by New York State laws.

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