NORTH BEND, Ore. – The attorney for three men accusing a North Bend priest of sex abuse is speaking out.
The men are suing the Archdiocese of Portland, claiming Father Pius Brazauskas kissed and fondled them when they were altar boys at Holy Redeemer Church in the late 1970s and early 1980s.
Portland attorney Peter Janci said they’re using this lawsuit to get to the bottom of what happened. He said the goal is to make sure something like this can’t happen again.
“In some ways there's no amount of money that can ever compensate these individuals for what was taken from them as children and the lives that have been shattered and what they've had to live through for decades,” Janci said.
He said child sex abuse can have a lasting impact on victims, resulting in anxiety, depression and difficulty trusting people in authority.
“I think we're in a moment in our country where we'll see change,” Janci said. “People are starting to understand at a better level that sexual abuse and sexual assault casts a long shadow. It impacts people for a very long time."
The plaintiffs are each seeking $3 million in damages, plus $20 million in punitive damages against the defendants. Janci said in the coming days, they will be making requests for documents and talking to witnesses.
The Archdiocese told The World newspaper that they are studying the lawsuit. The Roman Catholic Archbishop of Portland is also named as a defendant in the lawsuit.