Catholic Priest Sex Abuse Settlement Announced

Eight clergy sex abuse victims, including the son of a former Major League Baseball player, announced a settlement with a Catholic order and diocese based in Massachusetts on Monday.

According to attorney Mitchell Garabedian, the Congregation of the Sacred Hearts religious order based in Fairhaven and the Fall River diocese recently settled eight clergy sex abuse cases involving Father James Nickel for $880,000.

Fr. Nickel, who died in 2008, was a priest at Holy Trinity Parish in West Harwich on Cape Cod for several years in the 1970s, where he abused Chris Piersall, who is the son of former Red Sox Jimmy Piersall, and a number of other victims. The abuse spanned through the 1980s.

"The whole battle with the church over the last three years has been almost as bad as the abuse itself," survivor Chris Piersall said. "It's good to get it over, the settlement wasn't nearly what it should have been and some of these people should go to jail."

Cases against Father Nickel were also reported in New Jersey, Illinois, Washington D.C., Rhode Island, New Hampshire and the Bahamas.

Contact Us