Three men filed lawsuits against the Archdiocese of Chicago and one of its former priests claiming they had been sexually abused by Norbert Maday when he was assigned to St. Leo Catholic Church in Chicago, and later, St. Louis de Montfort Church in Oak Lawn.
The lawsuits come on the heels of the release of 6,000 pages of secret files kept by the Chicago Archdiocese as part of a court settlement, detailing how the nation’s third largest archdiocese shuttled troubled priests from parish to parish, and hid their histories from the public and parishioners.
The plaintiffs, who filed anonymously as “John Does,” were between the ages of nine and 14 when the alleged incidents of abuse took place. The case was filed in the Circuit Court of Cook County on Thursday by the Chicago-based law firm of Hurley McKenna & Mertz, P.C.
The incidents of abuse took place between 1967 and 1973, the plaintiffs’ attorneys claim. The lawsuit alleges that the plaintiffs, now adult men in their 50s, were victims of a “known and preventable hazard that the [defendants] created and allowed to continue.”
Also named in the lawsuit is convicted pedophile Thomas Hacker, who while working at St. Louis de Montfort during the same time period of Maday, also allegedly abused two of the plaintiffs.
The sixteen-count complaint accuses Maday and Hacker of numerous instances of sexual abuse and battery, and the Archdiocese of Chicago of breaching its duty to protect the children in its care.
The Archdiocese is also accused of fraudulent misrepresentation and concealment for failing to disclose what it knew or should have known about pedophile priests and school employees in the Archdiocese, and about Fr. Maday and Thomas Hacker in particular.
Hacker was convicted in 1989 on multiple counts of aggravated sexual assault against three Boy Scouts, ages 11 and 13, from St. Louis de Montfort Church's Troop 1600. He waged a 17-year reign of terror in the Chicago region, positioning himself as a youth sports coach, park district director and Boy Scout leader, where he had often had unsupervised access to young boys.
Included in the complaint are shocking allegations of Maday and Hacker’s association and shared proclivity as sexual predators of young boys in what has been detailed as a "tag team of abuse" at St. Louis de Montfort in the late 1960s and early 1970s.
While being sexually assaulted by Maday at St. Louis de Montfort, John Doe #2 purports that Maday began inviting Hacker on youth retreats, where he was sexually assaulted by Hacker as well, the complaint alleges.
John Doe #3, too, claims that he was abused by both Maday and eventually Hacker while a student at St. Louis de Montfort School.
In addition to the numerous accusations of sexual abuse of battery against Maday and Hacker, the complaint alleges that the Archdiocese of Chicago breached its duty to protect the children in its care. The man designated by the Archdiocese as Boy Scout liaison and charged with protecting children against child pedophiles like Hacker -- Father Maday -- was a child sex predator himself.
Maday, now 76, erroneously reported as deceased in other news reports, is finishing out his 20-year prison sentence at a halfway house in Osh Kosh, WI. Defrocked in 2007, Maday must register as a sex offender for the remainder of his life and wear an electronic monitor.
After his conviction in 1989, Hacker, also 76, remains in prison where he is serving an indefinite sentence and has been declared a "sexually dangerous person." He is said to be writing his autobiography in Big Muddy River Correctional Center.
“’Outrageous’ is not too strong of a word to describe the serious and prolonged abuse at the hands of both Norbert Maday and Thomas Hacker, suffered by two of the plaintiffs we represent,” commented lawyer Christopher Hurley in a written statement.
“And I have a distinct feeling that my clients are not the only ones victimized by what amounts to a ‘tag team’ of abusers,” he added.