Former priest, two women formally charged for having sex in Pearl River church
NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - The St. Tammany Parish District Attorney’s Office has charged a former priest and two women with vandalizing a Pearl River Church last Fall.
Travis Clark, 37, was a pastor at Saints Peter and Paul Roman Catholic Church when he allegedly had sex with two women, identified as Mindy Dixon, 41, and Melissa Cheng, 28, on the church’s altar.
All three have been charged with one count of institutional vandalism.
The Archdiocese of New Orleans released a statement saying,
“We acknowledge the charges filed against Travis Clark and Patrick Wattigny by the St. Tammany District Attorney’s Office. We have and will continue to cooperate with law enforcement.
We are proceeding to the Vatican to petition for their laicization presenting information from both the criminal and canonical investigations.
Our prayers remain with all those who were hurt by the actions of these two men, and in a particular way, we offer our prayers for healing of survivors of abuse.”
An attorney for the women also issued a statement:
“The District Attorney has rightfully chosen to not pursue obscenity charges against my clients. Instead, after waiting nearly six months, the State has decided to move forward with a lesser charge of “institutionalized vandalism.” It is clear the State went out of its way to contort the facts of this case in order to fit their own narrative.
Once again, they have overstepped their bounds as this nothing more than a thinly veiled attempt to regulate the morality of private individuals. Just because you don’t like something, doesn’t make it criminal. My clients look forward to their day in court as we continue to fight this baseless allegation.”
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