New Lawsuit Charges Des Moines Church Responsible for Sexual Abuse of Child

Former Associate Pastor who Was Criminally Convicted is Minneapolis Business Executive

At a news conference, attorneys will disclose and discuss a new civil lawsuit. It charges that church officials knew or should have known that the associate pastor who sexually assaulted a boy was a child molester before moving him to Des Moines.

The Lawsuit charges that St. John’s Evangelical Lutheran Church and hierarchical leaders of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) knew/or should have known that a year prior to his employment at St. John’s in 1983, Duane Martinson was investigated by Bloomington, Minnesota police for allegedly sexually abusing children while serving as a minister at Transfiguration Lutheran Church in Bloomington.

The lawsuit alleges that in 1983, as Associate Pastor of St. John’s Lutheran, Martinson befriended the then 15 year-old boy and his family and subsequently sexually assaulted the boy. The lawsuit claims the abuse occurred from 1983 to 1985.

Lawsuit will be filed on Wednesday in Polk County, Iowa. The legal complaint and related documents will be available at the press conference or at at 1 P.M. Wednesday

Attorneys Jeff Anderson and Sarah Odegaard/Jeff Anderson & Associates

Wednesday, September 29 at 1:00 PM

Jeff Anderson & Associates Law Office
366 Jackson Street, Suite 100
St. Paul, MN  55101