SAN JOSE, Calif.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Two lawsuits filed by the law firm of Estey & Bomberger in 2022 have received court permission to name Bellarmine College Prep for its role in enabling the sexual assaults by Brother William “Bill” Farrington in the late 1960s and 1970s.
The lawsuits were filed as a result of AB 218, which provided childhood sexual abuse victims with a three-year window to file lawsuits regardless of when the abuse occurred.
The civil lawsuits were filed in Santa Clara County Superior Court by the San Diego-based law firm, Estey & Bomberger.
The lawsuits allege that Farrington sexually assaulted two young teenage students while performing unnecessary hernia checks.
John Roe 1 recalled that each time he had to visit the infirmary, Farrington would tell him he needed to perform a hernia check. This happened even if a student went in for a knee injury or an injury to their hand.
“Farrington wasn’t authorized to perform hernia checks,” attorney Mary Bajo said. “To our knowledge, he had no medical training. He certainly was not a licensed doctor or certified nurse. This was a huge red flag that Bellarmine should have seen and put a stop to Farrington’s behavior.”
Numerous complaints about Farrington’s alleged predatory behavior have been an open secret in the Jesuit community for decades.
A 1968 Bellarmine graduate came forward in 2012 with his claim of sexual abuse by Farrington, which the school found credible. Farrington supervised students at Bellarmine who lived on campus until 1974.
After spending two years at Santa Clara University, Farrington went to Jesuit High School in Sacramento where he again was accused of sexual misconduct by former students. He was terminated and now reportedly lives at the Los Gatos Sacred Heart Jesuit Center, known for housing numerous Jesuits accused of predatory behavior.
“It turns out Brother Farrington has a long history of sexually assaulting minors,” Bajo said. “In the Bellarmine cases, most of the assaults took place on campus, however, we know that he visited John Roe once during a hospital stay. John Roe was not the only student that Farrington spent time alone with, as there have been other accounts of students being driven by him from the campus to various places.”
“Bellarmine and the Jesuits protected Farrington,” Bajo said. “But they never protected the students Farrington was repeatedly abusing.”
Both of the former students named in the lawsuits are now in their 60s. They have lived a majority of their life with the life-long trauma brought about by Bellarmine’s negligent supervision of Farrington, which is how he assaulted students at the infirmary on school grounds under the guise of performing a hernia check.
Farrington’s assaults while performing hernia checks are similar to the sexual assaults perpetrated by Ohio State doctor Richard Strauss and University of Michigan doctor Robert Anderson. Those two institutions were also sued by Estey & Bomberger.
Attorney Mary Bajo at: 619-295-0035
Ed Vasquez at 408-420-6558 or by email: [email protected]