things that matter

56 Years Later, Catholic Priest Arrested for Beauty Queen Murder

Credit: Justice For Irene Garza / Facebook

Fifty six years ago, Irene Garza was a young beauty queen with a college education. At 25, she had already accomplished what many couldn’t living on the Texas-Mexico border. Her life ended too soon.

Garza was last seen at Sacred Heart church where she had gone for confession. On April 16, 1960, a few days later, Garza’s body was discovered asphyxiated, beaten and raped in an irrigation canal. The man accused of her murder, Father John Feit, however he was never tried and the case grew cold.

Nearly 56 years later, Feit, 83, has been arrested arrested for her killing according to the New York Times. In court, Feit seem confused, “this whole thing makes no sense, because the crime in question took place in 1960,” he said (even though there’s no statute of limitation for that sort of crime).

This isn’t the first time Feit has had to plead his innocence. The cold case had been a hot topic during the 2014 district attorney race for Hidalgo County. Ricardo Rodriguez Jr. won the election, in part, because he promised to bring justice for the Garza family. In turn, they supported his campaign.

“We care about justice for Irene Garza. We care about violence against women. We care that those from the highest to the lowest stations in life receive the same equal dignity and attention that is merited by our legal system,” said Lynda Y. de la Viña, the victim’s cousin, while calling out for votes for Rodriguez.

During Feit’s time in a monastery for troubled priests, where the Catholic Church had placed him, Feit had talked to Dale Tacheny, a Trappist monk who served as his counselor, and told him that he “had killed someone.” Even though Tacheny didn’t ask him for details, Feit admitted to killing a young girl in Texas.

In 2002, Tacheny finally talked to the authorities but Rene Guerra, district attorney at the time, did nothing to indict the priest. Rodriguez, the current district attorney, recently voted to indict Feit. Now, the former priest’s bail is set at $750,000 as he sits in jail.

Read more about the 56-year-old crime from The New York Times here.

READ: Innocent Latino Shot “Execution Style” By US Marshals

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DHS Won't Deport Anyone in Flint While the Water Crisis Continues

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DHS Won’t Deport Anyone in Flint While the Water Crisis Continues

Credit: Bill Pugliano/Getty Images

Since 2014, the residents of Flint, Mich., had been paying for CONTAMINATED water:

Credit: Vox/YouTube

After this big f*ck up, government officials at the local and federal level have handed out bottled water…a short term solution.

FLINT, MI - JANUARY 21: Army National Guard Specialist David Brown loads bottled water into waiting cars at a fire station on January 21, 2016 in Flint, Michigan. Residents can go daily to fire stations in the city to pick up more water. (Photo by Sarah Rice/Getty Images)

BUT up until the end of January, you needed a form of identification to have access to that water.

FLINT, MI - JANUARY 13: A sign points the ay for Flint residents to get bottled water, water testing kits, and water filters at a Flint Fire Station January 13, 2016 in Flint, Michigan. On Tuesday, Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder activated the National Guard to help the American Red Cross distribute water to Flint residents to help them deal with the lead contamination that is in the City of Flint's water supply. (Photo by Bill Pugliano/Getty Images)
Credit: Bill Pugliano/Getty Images

Because of this requirement, the nearly 1,000 undocumented immigrants in Flint couldn’t access potable water.

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But wait, it gets worse!

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Even without the ID issue, Flint’s undocumented population won’t open their doors out of fear that an ICE agent will be on the other side.

ICE Agents Detain Suspected Undocumented Immigrants In Raids

It’s not an irrational fear. In early January, ICE arrested 121 mothers and children and sent them to detention centers.

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To fix this f*ck up, the Department of Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson recently said agents wouldn’t conduct raids in Flint during the water crisis.

Jeh Johnson Administers Oath Of Allegiance At Naturalization Ceremony In NYC

Buuuuut, Johnson also went out of his way to say that he still could conduct raids at his discretion.

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Listen, Jeh (what kind of name is that even?), we get that it’s your job, but sometimes it’s okay to look the other way.

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Especially when we’re talking about a basic right for women and children.

FLINT, MI - JANUARY 21: Sandra Mendez and her son Alonzo Cabrera, 1, receive water from Red Cross volunteers at their home January 21, 2016 in Flint, Michigan. Mendez said she had an appointment set up for next week to get her son's blood tested for lead. The Red Cross is supporting state and county efforts to bring water to every household in the city. (Photo by Sarah Rice/Getty Images)

Do you think that undocumented immigrants in Flint, Mich., deserve to live without fear and access to clean water? If so, click the share button below!

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