Third Woman Files Lawsuit for Sexual Abuse at Marianist Family Retreat Center in Cape May

Contact:  Attorney Patrick Noaker, cell (612) 839-1080

(Cape May, N.J. – October 26, 2021). Today, a woman identified as Jane Doe GM filed a lawsuit in Cape May County Superior Court for damages related to being sexually abused when she was between 9 and 12 years-old, from 1974 – 1976, by Marianist Brother Albert “Al” Koch. She is the third woman to file such a lawsuit involving the now infamous Marianist Family Retreat Center in Cape May Point, New Jersey.

Click Here for Complaint

Br. Al manipulated the girl into a position where he could sexually abuse her by using her Catholic faith.  Br. Al gave the girl a crucifix as a gift so that she would keep visiting the Retreat Center to continue to develop her faith and so that he could continue sexually assaulting her.  This was very confusing for this 9-year-old girl, who had absolutely no understanding of sex or sexual assault.

According to the Complaint, the girl lived in Cape May, New Jersey and regularly visited the Marianist Family Retreat Center by riding her bike to the Retreat Center.  When there, Br. Albert Koch repeatedly sexually abused young the girl.  According to the woman’s Minneapolis-based attorney, Patrick Noaker, “This girl’s family was very devout Catholic and her mother and father were delighted that their daughter was visiting the Retreat Center and interacting with religious Priests and Brothers.  They could have never imagined that their young daughter would be subjected to repeated sexual assaults by one of those Brothers.”

The first sexual abuse lawsuit against the Retreat Center was filed in January reported sexual abuse by both Br. Koch and Fr. John J. Sheehan for reportedly assaulting another girl at the same location around 1974 when that girl was 14.  The second lawsuit against the Retreat Center was filed in June of 2021 and involved a local 12-year-old girl who was assaulted by Fr. John J. Sheehan from 1978 – 1979, when the girl attended Bible study classes at the Retreat Center.

According to a newspaper account, Br. Al Koch “appears to have been active at the center into 2020.”  Br. Koch is believed to be now living at a Marianist facility in Dayton, Ohio.

According to its website, the Marianist Family Retreat Center is operated in partnership with the St. Louis-based Marianist religious order (also known as the Society of Mary). The center, which has operated for 50 years, reportedly hosts hundreds of children and families every year.

At least 44 other Marianists have been “found to have sexually abused a minor.”

Patrick Noaker is an attorney licensed to practice law in New York, New Jersey, Minnesota and Missouri, with offices in Minneapolis and New York who has represented hundreds of survivors of sexual assault across the country.  Patrick is a member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum and has won multiple jury verdicts and settlements exceeding a million dollars.