Priest Sentenced to Prison in Sex Case

Associated Press
April 26, 1983

A Roman Catholic priest convicted of raping and sexually abusing young retarded patients at the state hospital where he was a chaplain was sentenced Tuesday to six years in prison.

However, the prison term for the Rev. Louis Aloysius Garcia, 46, was stayed for two days so he can post $15,000 bail while his attorney appeals the conviction.

A Tulare County Superior Court jury found Garcia guilty of rape, two counts of sodomy, oral copulation, attempted sodomy and two counts of lewd and lascivious acts with a child. Judge Jay Ballantyne sentenced Garcia to six years in prison on each count, but the terms will run concurrently.

Defense attorney J. Patrick Sullivan said during the trial that the young victims from the Porterville State Hospital were lying.

Prosecutor Martin Malone acknowledged that retarded patients occasionally lie to get what they want, but he said the youngsters told the same, basic story.

Garcia worked at the state hospital from May 1979 to August 1980.


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