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Texas

Houston Police Investigate Local Catholic Priest Accused Of Sexual Abuse

The Special Victims Division is looking into Father John Keller. His name is included on the list of credibly accused clergy released by the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston.

The Houston Police Department is investigating a local Catholic priest based on accusations of sexual abuse by two alleged victims, the Houston Chronicle reported.

HPD's Special Victims Division is conducting the investigation. Although police haven't identified the priest, the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston has disclosed that it forwarded two complaints to HPD about Father John Keller, a priest at Prince of Peace Catholic Community, located in Tomball.

Keller has been temporarily removed from ministry.

The Chronicle reports the two complaints are among four reported to the Special Victim's Division since January 31. That day, the Archdiocese released the names of 40 priests "credibly accused" of child sex abuse and identified two others — including Keller — who were under investigation.

HPD said the investigation could take months. The results will be presented to the Harris County District Attorney's Office to determine if the priest will be charged with a crime.

The Houston chapter of the Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests (SNAP) recently criticized Cardinal Daniel DiNardo, head of the Archdiocese and President of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, for allowing Keller to celebrate mass the same day his name was among those released on the list of clergy credibly accused of sexual abuse.

The Archdiocese said Wednesday it “continues to fully cooperate with law enforcement.”

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