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Lawsuit Filed Alleging Late Priest Raped Teen

Forester Haynie Attorney Matthew Haynie has filed a lawsuit on behalf of a Bay Area man who was raped by a priest as a teenager. Steven Chavez, now 58, was an altar boy in St. Justin’s Parish in Santa Clara, California when the abuse allegedly happened. Thomas Bettencourt, the now deceased priest Chavez named as his alleged abuser, also infected Chavez with HIV. Chavez was only made aware of this when he was trying to get into West Point and pass a physical exam, his bloodwork showed he tested positive for HIV. Chavez was given six months to live and it was only then that he revealed what happened to his father. His father then filed a report with the Archdiocese of San Francisco which was dismissed.

In recent years, more and more people have come forward with accusations of multiple instances of sexual abuse that has happened at the hands of Catholic clergy, revealing how rampant the problem is. In recent years, bishops across the country have released lists detailing the names of priests who have been accused of sexually abusing children. Every bishop in the state of California has released a list, except for the Archdiocese of San Francisco. As a response to the Catholic Church’s refusal to cooperate, independent groups such as Survivor Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP), have taken it upon themselves to compile and publicly release these lists. As a result of these lists, it is now known that another teenager, only a year after Chavez had his alleged encounter with Bettencourt, claims he was also sexually abused by the late priest.

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About Forester Haynie

Forester Haynie stands for those who should not be forced to stand alone and is currently investigating other sex abuse cover-ups in schools, places of worship, universities, and big business. If you or someone you know may have suffered sexual abuse by a Church Priest, Pastor, Minister, Clergy Member, Employer, or person of authority, do not stand alone. Please fill out the form below for a free case consultation.

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