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Civil case against Green Bay Catholic Diocese ends

Brothers who were molested by a Catholic priest drop their claim for punitive damages against the Green Bay diocese.

APPLETON, Wis (WFRV) - The civil lawsuit against the Green Bay Catholic Diocese ended Wednesday. In Outagamie County Court, Todd and Troy Merryfield announced they would drop their pursuit of punitive damages in the case against the Diocese. 

 

 

The Merryfields had accused the Diocese of covering up and protecting former priest John Feeney even though the Diocese knew Feeney had been sexually abusing children.  Both men were sexually abused by Feeney when he was a priest at their Freedom parish in the late 1970's.

 

 

On Monday, jurors decided the Diocese knowingly covered up Feeney's past abuses and awarded the brothers $700,000.  The punitive phase of the case was to resume today but the proceedings were canceled at the request of the Merryfields.  After court was adjourned, the brothers told Local 5 News that this case was never about money but more so about revealing the Diocese' secrets.

 

 

A representative for the Diocese, Deacon Tim Reilly, expressed respect for the jury's earlier decision, but said he disagreed with its conclusions.

 

 

In October, Troy Merryfield is expected to testify in a Nevada case involving John Feeney.

 

 

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