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Sex Abuse Victim: Priest Held Gun to My Head

The deceased New York state holy man allegedly molested a boy in the 1980s
By Josh Gardner,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 26, 2018 7:30 PM CST
This 2012 file photo shows a silhouette of a crucifix and a stained glass window inside a Catholic Church in New Orleans.   (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)

(Newser) – A New York state priest allegedly sexually assaulted a teen in the 1980s while holding a gun to his head, according to a complaint filed with a fund set up by the Buffalo diocese to compensate sexual abuse victims. The Buffalo News reports that Rev. Michael R. Freeman was serving over the state line in Lancaster, Pa., when he used the firearm to force the boy to engage in non-consensual sexual contact. The victim, now 49, says that Freeman was a former military chaplain who routinely carried a .38-caliber revolver. "And if the child would not participate willingly in Freeman’s sexual abuse, Freeman would jokingly threaten him with the revolver," says the victim's lawyer. "He always carried it concealed. And several times, Freeman put the gun to the boy’s head."

Further, says the victim's lawyer, "Freeman would have this child perform oral sex on him and then absolve him of the sin afterwards." The alleged abuse, which went on for a number of years in the mid-1980s, occurred after the diocese had received reports of Freeman abusing other children, notes the Democrat and Chronicle. "They knew, and they just turned a blind eye," says a man who claims Freeman molested him in 1980. "What kills me is he abused people after I reported it. I think that bothers me more than anything." Freeman died in 2010. (Similar victims funds have been set up in Pennsylvania, where Freeman was mentioned in a grand jury report in August.)

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