Big settlement in church abuse case disclosed

ST. LOUIS | A man now in his late 30s has reached a $600,000 settlement over allegations of abuse by a mid-Missouri priest in the 1980s, when the victim was a child.

The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests said Thursday that the settlement finalized in July is among the largest ever in a Missouri clergy sex abuse case.

The victim came forward last year to disclose the abuse by the Rev. Gerald Howard.

Howard served in 1983 and 1984 at Saints Peter and Paul parish in Boonville, where the victim and his family were parishioners.

Howard had pleaded guilty in a sex abuse case in New Jersey in 1982, received treatment, then was placed in Boonville in the Diocese of Jefferson City.

SNAP's David Clohessy says the settlement needs to be made public so any other victims can come forward.