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Baltimore Archdiocese Sexual Abuse Lawsuit Attorneys

Fierce Counsel from Levy Konigsberg

At Levy Konigsberg, our sexual abuse litigation team is highly awarded and recognized for incredible work to stand up for the rights of the sexually abused, including in challenging legal battles against religious institutions like the Baltimore Archdiocese in Maryland. With Attorney-Partner Anna Kull spearheading many of our litigated sexual abuse cases, there is no lawsuit too complex or opponent too large for us. If you were sexually abused by a member of the Baltimore Catholic Archdiocese, then you should explore your legal options for justice and compensation now. Even if sexual abuse occurred decades ago when you were a child, the recently-signed Maryland Child Victims Act of 2023, an important legislative update, allows you to start a civil claim.

Learn more about your rights during a free, confidential consultation with Levy Konigsberg.

Sexual Abuse Accusations Against the Baltimore Archdiocese

A nearly-500-page report was recently released to the public by the Maryland Attorney General. It details decades of sexual abuse allegations, reports, and complaints within the Baltimore Archdiocese against hundreds of children and young adults. Dozens of priests and church members are implicated or directly named in the report.

As has been seen in many other similar cases involving religious groups, the Baltimore Archdiocese and its leadership seem to have taken deliberate steps to silence victims and keep information about the sexual abuse reports hidden for years. This deliberate attempt to harbor sexual abusers and child sexual predators while simultaneously putting more children in danger of abuse can make the Baltimore Archdiocese liable for the resulting harm and losses.

Brief History of Baltimore Archdiocese Sexual Abuse

Based on what has been uncovered by the report, this is a brief and incomplete history of child sexual abuse within the Baltimore Archdiocese:

  • 1940s: The earliest confirmed reports of child sexual abuse within the Baltimore Archdiocese, which covers Baltimore City and nine counties, begin in the ‘40s.
  • 1958: Father Gerald Tragesser is accused of sexually abusing a teenage girl. Archbishop Francis Keough appears to have clandestinely resolved the matter in the Baltimore Circuit Court to keep the information away from the public and other churchgoers.
  • 1964: Father Lawrence Brett admits to sexually abusing a boy. In response to his admission, the Catholic Church sent him to New Mexico for “treatment,” but he continued to sexually assault young boys while there. Ultimately, he was transferred to Calvert Hall College High School in Baltimore, where he abused at least another 20 children.
  • 1987: Father John Joseph Mike, who served in multiple Baltimore Archdiocese parishes, pleads guilty to abusing a boy. The plea deal allows him to not admit to sexual abuse, but the report details that he sexually assaulted at least seven young boys across many years.
  • 1987: Deacon Leo O’Hara admits to having molested more than 100 children since 1953 by abusing his position of authority within the Baltimore Archdiocese.
  • 1993: Father James Dowdy is accused of sexually abusing a young boy for at least eight years. The Baltimore Archdiocese places him on administrative leave and agrees to pay for ongoing behavioral rehabilitative therapy. The benefits paid to Father Dowdy are believed to cost the Church nearly $160,000 but only paid less than $9,000 to the victim who spoke up about the abuse.
  • 2002: A large docket of information about sexual abuse cases filed against the Baltimore Archdiocese is made public. It includes information about dozens of priests who committed sexually abusive acts against children for decades, and reveals that the religious group had paid $5.6 million to victims so far.

Statute of Limitations on Child Sex Abuse Cases in Maryland

In response to the Baltimore Archdiocese sexual abuse report, Maryland legislators pushed to pass the Maryland Child Victims Act of 2023. This act, which was recently signed into law by Governor Wes Moore, removed the statute of limitations on child sex abuse lawsuits filed in civil courts. In other words, people who were sexually abused by a Baltimore Catholic Archdiocese member even many years ago can still file a civil claim today as long as the abuse occurred when the victim was a child.

What Damages Can Plaintiffs Demand?

Typically, sexual abuse lawsuits filed against large organizations like the Baltimore Archdiocese will seek compensatory damages for the plaintiffs. Compensatory damages are used to provide relief for financial losses, physical injury, pain, suffering, and emotional traumatization suffered due to the defendant. The exact amount owed to a plaintiff will vary from case to case because compensatory damages are based on unique losses and harm.

Two important notes about the damages owed to Baltimore Archdiocese sexual abuse lawsuit plaintiffs:

  • Under the Maryland Child Victims Act of 2023, non-economic damages against a private institution can be capped at $1.5 million.
  • Economic or punitive damages awarded through a Maryland Child Victims Act lawsuit cannot be capped.

Get a Free, Confidential Consultation

If you were sexually abused by a member of the Baltimore Catholic Archdiocese, then now is the time to speak up and demand justice. Even if the sexual abuse occurred when you were a child, many years ago, you should talk to Levy Konigsberg right away. The Maryland Child Victims Act of 2023 could let you start a claim, despite any previous statutes of limitations.

Seek justice now. Our Baltimore Archdiocese sexual abuse lawsuit attorneys are here to protect and empower you. Call (800) 315-3806 to get a free, confidential consultation.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Q:What is the Baltimore Archdiocese Sexual Abuse Lawsuit?

    A:The Baltimore Archdiocese Sexual Abuse Lawsuit refers to a series of lawsuits filed against the Archdiocese of Baltimore alleging sexual abuse by clergy members. The lawsuits are filed by survivors of abuse and seek to hold the Archdiocese accountable for the abuse that occurred.

  • Q:Who can file a lawsuit against the Baltimore Archdiocese?

    A:Survivors of sexual abuse by clergy members who were affiliated with the Archdiocese of Baltimore may be able to file a lawsuit against the Archdiocese. Each case is unique, so it's important to speak with an attorney to determine your legal options.

  • Q:What compensation can survivors of Baltimore Archdiocese sexual abuse seek?

    A:Survivors of sexual abuse may be able to seek compensation for damages related to their abuse, such as medical expenses, therapy costs, lost wages, and pain and suffering. In some cases, survivors may also be able to seek punitive damages.

  • Q:How can I file a lawsuit against the Baltimore Archdiocese?

    A:If you are a survivor of sexual abuse by a clergy member affiliated with the Archdiocese of Baltimore, you may be able to file a lawsuit. It's important to speak with an experienced attorney who can guide you through the legal process and help you understand your options.

  • Q:What is the statute of limitations for filing a Baltimore Archdiocese lawsuit?

    A:The Maryland Child Victims Act allows child sex abuse lawsuits to be filed for a limited time, regardless of how long ago the abuse occurred. It is important to act now before this limited time to file claims expires.

  • Q:Can I file a Baltimore Archdiocese lawsuit if the abuse occurred many years ago?

    A:Yes, but only for a limited time based on a new law called the Maryland Child Victims Act. It is important to speak with an attorney now to determine your legal options.

  • Q:How can an attorney help me with my case?

    A:An experienced attorney can help you understand your legal rights, guide you through the legal process, and advocate on your behalf. They can also help you gather evidence, build a strong case, and negotiate with the Baltimore Archdiocese to reach a fair settlement.


Find out whether you have a case by speaking to one of our experienced lawyers via our 24/7 toll-free hotline or by submitting an email inquiry. Our attorneys will be quick to respond to you and happy to answer all of your questions.

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