CHICAGO (CBS) — Disgraced former U.S. House Speaker Dennis Hastert was facing new allegations of sexually abusing a boy when he was a teacher and wrestling coach in the 1970s, after a new accuser filed a lawsuit in Kendall County.
The accusations come less than three months before Hastert is scheduled to be released from federal prison, where he is serving a 15-month sentence for violating banking laws to cover up hush money payments to another victim.
The lawsuit filed Friday claims Hastert forced himself on a 9- or 10-year-old boy in a Yorkville High School bathroom in the early 1970s.
The plaintiff said he didn’t know who Hastert was, but a few days later, when he saw Hastert in a gym class at Yorkville Grade School, he recognized him as his attacker.
The suit claims when the boy recognized Hastert, he began shaking and crying, and Hastert walked up to him and took him into a hallway, asking if the boy had reported the assault. Hastert allegedly warned him against reporting the attack, threatening that Hastert’s father was the sheriff, and if the plaintiff told his parents, he would go to jail.
The lawsuit also claims the plaintiff tried to report the crime to the Kendall County State’s Attorney’s office years later, but prosecutors threatened to charge the plaintiff with a crime, and accused him of slandering Hastert.
The plaintiff has sought at more than $50,000 in damages related to mental and emotional distress. The lawsuit names Hastert as defendant, but also indicates Yorkville High School might be sued as well.
Hastert’s attorney has not responded to requests for comment.