Attorney Amy C. Keller of Lipsitz Green Scime Cambria, recently obtained a $30 million jury verdict for her client, who was a victim of childhood sexual abuse.
In a front page story, The Buffalo News reported that the $30 million jury verdict is believed to be the largest award in Western New York for a case filed under the Child Victims Act.
The Child Victims Act lawsuit was filed against Rev. Douglas D. Thore, who served as pastor of St. Nicodemus Evangelical Lutheran Church, located in Marilla, NY, from approximately 1984 to 2004. Thore resigned from his post as a Lutheran pastor when Erie County sheriff’s deputies investigated him due to allegations of child molestation.
To maintain privacy, the plaintiff in this case was identified as “LG-54” in court filings. LG-54 is a 45 year old man who is a survivor of childhood sexual abuse. Rev. Douglas Thore sexually abused the plaintiff multiple times when he was approximately 11 to 13 years old.
For nearly 30 years, the victim is this case had not discussed the abuse he suffered. In 2020, when the Child Victims Act allowed victims to pursue justice against their abusers, the plaintiff discussed his abuse for the first time with his attorney, Ms. Keller.
The jury, which heard this case in New York State Supreme Court, awarded $15 million in compensatory damages for pain and suffering and $15 million in punitive damages. In a separate ongoing lawsuits, LG-54 is also suing St. Nicodemus Lutheran Church, the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America, and the Upstate New York Synod of the ELCA.