Nashville-area Catholic Pastor Faces 10 Child Sex Charges After June Indictment | Old North State Wealth News
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Nashville-area Catholic pastor faces 10 child sex charges after June indictment

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An associate pastor at St. Philip Catholic Church who was indicted earlier this year on sexual abuse charges is facing more charges in a new indictment.

A Williamson County grand jury returned a superseding indictment on June 5 charging Rev. Juan Carlos Garcia- Mendoza with two additional counts of sexual battery.

Garcia- Mendoza was originally indicted in February with one count of continuous sexual abuse of a child, one count of aggravated sexual battery, four counts of sexual battery by an authority figure and two counts of sexual battery.

He was ordained to the priesthood in 2020 at St. Rose of Lima in Murfreesboro and was assigned to St. Philip in July 2022.

St. Philip officials reported to the Diocese of Nashville Safe Environment Office in November 2023 that a teen in the parish had made a report of improper touching involving Garcia-Mendoza, records show, noting that the priest was then removed from his position and public ministry.

Per diocesan protocols, church officials filed a report about the allegations against Garcia-Mendoza with the Tennessee Department of Children’s Services, officials said.

The Franklin Police Department said it was investigating in January, and at that time, the SNAP (Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests) released a statement asking why it took so long for the diocese to remove the priest from his position.

“We also ask the Diocese to explain why, if the accusation was brought to them in November, Fr. Garcia apparently remained in ministry until recently. We hope that no children were injured because the priest was allowed to continue in his position of authority,” the organization said at that time.

The Franklin Police Department is asking anyone with information about Garcia-Mendoza to contact Det. Andrea Clark at 615-476-2809.

Information about reporting abuse and victim assistance can be located at www.dioceseofnashville.com.

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This article originally appeared on Nashville Tennessean: Nashville-area Catholic pastor indicted, accused of child sex abuse

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