7-year-old boy died after being viciously beaten by Catholic school staff for 'being in the toilet too long', abuse inquiry told

Aldo Morno reportedly died after a religious brother identified as David McKell beat him ruthlessly at St Columba’s College in Largs, Ayrshire in 1980


                            7-year-old boy died after being viciously beaten by Catholic school staff for 'being in the toilet too long', abuse inquiry told

A seven-year-old boy reportedly died after getting a "vicious" beating by a staff member at a top Catholic school in Scotland, an inquiry heard on Tuesday, October 8.

The boy, identified as Aldo Morno, was reportedly punished for being in the toilet too long, the Scottish Child Abuse Inquiry (SCAI) was told.

A former student at the school, Edward, during the inquiry, said that he was told that Aldo had been "killed" at St Columba’s College in Largs, Ayrshire in 1980.

Edward, now 64, said that Aldo died after a religious brother called Brother Germanus, identified as David McKell, beat him ruthlessly.

Edward reportedly also told the hearing in Edinburgh that, when he was at the school in the 1960s, he was sexually abused on multiple occasions by McKell at the prestigious boarding school.

Edward added that his nephew, who was also a former pupil at the school, revealed in 2014 that he was at St Columba’s when Aldo was "killed," telling him: "It haunts me to this day."

"Aldo Moroni, a little boy, was getting a vicious beating on the landing outside the toilet for supposedly being in the toilet too long," Edward said. "[My nephew said] there was screaming and holy murder going on; it got worse, and the next thing we [the nephew and his classmates] knew, there’s an ambulance there, and the next thing we knew we are at a funeral in Dunoon—Aldo was dead," according to the Daily Mail

Edward said that when his nephew told him about the incident he was "dumbfounded." He was also told that the children at the time were told that Aldo had died of a heart attack. 

Senior counsel to the inquiry Colin MacAulay QC said that Edward's nephew "drew a link between the beating happening and the death."

Edward reportedly also told the inquiry that he felt guilty of "cowardice" for not raising alarm about McKell after he sexually abused him.  "I thought about my cowardice—could I have stopped that boy being killed?" he said, adding that he was seven or eight-years-old when "vicious" McKell targeted him on nearly "two dozen" occasions.

Edward added that, as an adult, he went to the Marist Brothers, who ran St Columba's, and told them about his ordeal.

However, he claimed that the order urged him to not tell the police about his experience at the school.

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