|Another Corpus Christi Priest Faces Accusation of Sexual Abuse
By Evan Moore
August 31, 1995
A second priest from the Corpus Christi Diocese was accused
Wednesday of sexually molesting a minor.
The Rev. Robert Trevino is accused in a civil suit of
molesting a boy in Alice in 1993.
The lawsuit follows an indictment in June against another
priest, the Rev. Jesus Garcia of Mathis, who is accused of
drugging and molesting four youths and a man. Garcia fled the
country after complaints were made against him in September
1994, and is thought to be in Spain.
In the most recent suit, filed in 148th District Court in
Corpus Christi, Roberto and Antonia Arredondo and their son,
Roberto Arredondo Jr., 16, complained that Trevino molested
the younger Arredondo during an overnight stay at a church
rectory in Alice in September 1993.
The Arredondo family spoke with the knowledge that their names
would be published.
Trevino, who left the Alice Parish after the Arredondos
complained to police in March 1994, is currently a chaplain
with the Air Force at Holloman AFB near Alamogordo, N.M
The younger Arredondo said he was being counseled by Trevino
because of poor performance in school when the priest asked
him to spend the night at the rectory after a high school
football game. The boy's parents said they agreed when Trevino
told them another priest would also be staying at the
Roberto Arredondo Jr., however, said the other priest was not
at the rectory. He said that during dinner Trevino questioned
him about sex, then attempted to enter the shower with him
The youth said he became frightened and asked the priest to
allow him to bathe alone and Trevino agreed. He then fell
asleep on the couch, he said, and awoke in the early morning
hours with Trevino performing a sex act on him.
""The next morning Father Trevino acted like nothing had
happened," said the youth. ""I went home later that day, but I
couldn't talk about it. "
But the youth told his father in March 1994, and the father
Alice Police Chief Jack Compton said his department
investigated the complaint, questioned the priest and offered
to arrange a polygraph examination for him, but Trevino
declined the test, saying diocesan officials would not allow
him to take a polygraph.
Compton said he then called Monsignor Thomas McGettrick, who
denied Trevino's claim and said that the diocese had
instructed the priest to cooperate with investigators.
The teen-ager has volunteered to take a polygraph examination
and his parents have agreed, though the test has not been
Throughout the investigation, the elder Arredondo said he
attempted to speak with Bishop Rene Gracida, but Gracida
refused to see him or speak to him.
The case then languished in the office of Jim Wells District
Attorney Frank Garza.
Garza, in a telephone conversation with Arredondo in late May,
reportedly told Arredondo that the case remained active and
open and that he planned to pursue it.
When asked about it by a Chronicle reporter the next day,
however, Garza's response was ""Who's Robert Trevino? "
But Garza told the Chronicle that he intended to bring the
case before a grand jury in June. That action was not taken,
Trevino refused comment except to say that he had joined the
Air Force of his own volition. Gracida reportedly was away
from the diocese. McGettrick, however, said he believes there
are no grounds for a suit.
""As I remember it, the (Arredondo) family couldn't find a
lawyer who would take it because it was groundless," he said.
""I'd certainly be surprised to see it filed now. "
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