Former Catholic School Students Fight To Keep Child Rapist John Merzbacher In Prison

Court ruling could release teacher from four life sentences

By Tricia Bishop (The Baltimore Sun, 4/28/2012)

Former sexually abused students of John Joseph Merzbacher and some of their family members stand in support to keep Merzbacher in prison after the sexual abuse that took place 40 years ago at the Catholic Community Middle School in Locust Point. (Lloyd Fox, Baltimore Sun / April 21, 2012)

Standing under a stormy sky, Bill Stankiewicz got chills as he looked toward the old brick building that once housed the Catholic Community middle school in South Baltimore.

“It’s kind of creepy,” he said, rubbing goose bumps along his forearms. He hadn’t been back since graduation in the 1970s, purposely avoiding the school — and the memories of what happened in it.

“Thirty-six years is a long time to bury something. It’s time to exorcise the demons.”

"Merz" smirks as he leaves the courthouse in 1995.

Roughly two dozen of his surviving classmates gathered at the site last weekend, all bound by a shared childhood tragedy detailed in multiple court filings: repeated sexual and mental abuse by English teacher John J. Merzbacher, now 71. They’ve come together in middle age to fight for his continued imprisonment, as a federal judge’s court ruling threatens to release the convicted child rapist from four life terms.

Continue reading “Former Catholic School Students Fight To Keep Child Rapist John Merzbacher In Prison” at The Baltimore Sun.

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