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Three San Diego women file suit against Catholic Diocese, days after child abuse law is signed

Posted at 5:35 PM, Oct 18, 2019
and last updated 2019-10-18 21:16:38-04

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - Days after Governor Gavin Newsom signed a new law aimed at child sex abuse, three San Diego women came forward to announce a lawsuit against the Diocese of San Diego.

The three women say they were abused by Monsignor Gregory Sheridan as children. Sheridan worked in this diocese for 35 years and is on the diocese’s list of credibly accused abusive priests.

This new measure gives survivors of childhood sexual assault, regardless of their age, a three-year “window” to bring a civil lawsuit against any perpetrator and employer or third party that was aware of misconduct that created a risk of childhood sexual assault.

The new law also extends the statute of limitations for survivors of childhood sexual assault, giving survivors more time to file civil lawsuits: up to their 40th birthday (previously their 26th birthday) or within five years (previously three years) from the date of discovery of an adult psychological injury caused by the childhood sexual assault.

One of the victims told 10News, "It doesn’t mean you don’t love God, doesn’t mean you don’t support your church, it means this priest was a bad apple."

10News reached out to the Diocese of San Diego and they sent a statement that reads in part, "There is no crime or sin worse than a priest abusing the young people he is sworn to serve and protect. We pray that victims of sexual abuse receive the help they need to heal."