Abuse victims push to kill Statute of Limitations

Dec 27, 2011 by

The lawsuit Richard Fitter filed in Superior Court in Newark Wednesday is almost certainly doomed to fail.

Fitter knows that. The statute of limitations on his claim of sexual abuse at the hands of a priest has long since passed. But the 45-year-old Montclair man wanted to make a point.

“He’s never been held accountable,” Fitter said of the Rev. John Capparelli, the man who allegedly groped him repeatedly in the early 1980s. “Without a change in the law, people like me will never be able to truly seek justice and expose pedophiles like the man who abused me.”

New Jersey’s law is among the more restrictive in the nation, allowing lawsuits to be filed for up to two years after a childhood victim turns 18.

Older victims can bring suits within two years of “reasonably discovering” the connection between the abuse and the emotional damage it caused, but the hurdles established by the state Supreme Court in such cases make it “very, very difficult, if not impossible” to make it to trial, said Fitter’s lawyer, Greg Gianforcaro. Read the FULL STORY here.

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