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Sex-abuse accuser from Cortland reacts to Franciscan brother’s death

Published: Sat, January 26, 2013 @ 4:12 p.m.

Sex-abuse accuser from Cortland reacts to Fransiscan brother’s death

Associated Press


Mike Munno said he knew there would be some strange days ahead when he and a fellow Warren John F. Kennedy High School graduate discussed the sex crimes they say Franciscan brother Stephen Baker committed against them in high school, but Brother Baker’s death isn’t the outcome he wanted or expected.

“I don’t think it’s the closure we expected. I would have not thought it would have gone to this extreme,” Munno of Cortland said Saturday after police in Hollidaysburg, Pa., found Baker dead in his room at St. Bernadine Monastery in Newry, Pa., about 90 minutes east of Pittsburgh.

“No matter what it is, you don’t wish death on anybody,” Munno said.

Baker’s body was found at about 7:30 a.m., and an autopsy was scheduled for Saturday afternoon. Officials from the Youngstown Catholic Diocese and Brother Baker’s Franciscan order said the circumstances of his death are under investigation.

“Let us continue to pray for all victims of abuse, for Brother Baker’s family and the repose of his soul,” Bishop George V. Murry of the Youngstown Diocese said in a statement.

Munno and another man met with the news media Jan. 16 to allege that the reason the Youngstown Diocese and the Franciscan Third Order Regular settled out of court with 11 former male athletes at JFK was that Baker sexually abused them from 1986 to 1990 at the school and in other locations.

Baker was athletic trainer at the school from 1986 to 1992 and would use massages in a small, closed training room at the school to massage the boys’ genitals and digitally pentrate them, the men, a spokesman and their attorney said.

Read the full story Sunday in The Vindicator and on Vindy.com.


1excel(1311 comments)posted 3 years, 6 months ago

The affliction of homosexuality is not without victims be it those indoctrinated or those who indoctrinate.

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2sue(179 comments)posted 3 years, 6 months ago

Unfortunately this is another case where the church is going to have to get out its checkbook. How many more victims of abuse are out there?

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3TB(1167 comments)posted 3 years, 6 months ago

The affliction of Catholicism is not without victims be it those indoctrinated or those who indoctrinate.

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4JudyJones(162 comments)posted 3 years, 6 months ago

This changes nothing. It's still crucial that victims,witnesses, and whistleblowers come forward so complicit church officials can be exposed and held responsible, and so future cover ups will be deterred.

Maybe, if the church officials would have done the right thing by putting Baker in a secure treatment center as soon as they first knew about his sexually abusing children, this might not have happened.

We feel sad for his family. and we hope victims will take comfort in the fact that Brother Baker can no longer harm innocent kids.

Judy Jones, SNAP Midwest Associate Director, USA, 636-433-2511. snapjudy@gmail.com,
"SNAP (The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests)

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