Monsignor Peter Garcia
Diocese of Orange
Assigned as follows:
- 1967-1970 St. Cecilia (Los Angeles, CA)
- 1971 Santa Isabel (Los Angeles, CA)
- 1972-1973 Sanctuary Our Lady of Guadalupe (Los Angeles, CA)
- 1974-1975 St. Stephen’s Church (Monterey Park, CA)
- 1976 St. Polycarp (Stanton, CA)
- 1977-1978 Holy Family (Glendale, CA)
- 1979 St. Eugene (Los Angeles, CA)
- 1980 St. Anthony (San Fernando Rey Mission, CA)
- 1981-1984 St. Marcellinus (Los Angeles, CA)
- 1984 Servants of the Paraclete, (Jemez Springs, NM)
- 1985-1987 Absent on Sick Leave
- 1985-1986 San Miguel Parish (Scorro, NM)
- 1987 Our Lady of Belen (Belen, NM; St. Luke Institute, MD)
- 1988 Unknown
- 1989 Absent on Sick Leave
Summary of Abuse Allegations against Monsignor Peter 1966:
Monsignor Peter Garcia was ordained a priest in 1966, who served in the Diocese of Orange. According to media reports, he was first accused of sexually abusing minors in 1975. By the time he advanced to the rank of monsignor, he reportedly had sex with up to 20 boys. In 1984, the aunt of two boys reported that Monsignor Garcia engaged in sexually inappropriate conduct with her two minor nephews.
In 1989, Cardinal Roger Mahony requested that Monsignor Garcia seek laicization. It is believed Monsignor Garcia resigned from ministry in 1989, after returning to Los Angeles and refusing to take medication to contain his sexual urges toward children. In 1993, another allegation of sexual abuse was made against Monsignor Garcia.
Monsignor Garcia was sent to St. Luke Institute and Servants of the Paraclete, institutions known for treating priests accused of child sexual abuse. He left the priesthood in 1989 after refusing to take medication to suppress his sexual urges.
He has been accused by at least 12 people of child sexual abuse from 1961-1983, and has been named in at least three civil lawsuits. At least one claim was settled as part of a 2007 $660M settlement with 508 plaintiffs.
Based on his priest file, it is believed he targeted boys aged 7-16, who were illegal immigrants. He threatened to have them deported if they told anyone about the abuse.
Before his death in 2009, Monsignor Garcia admitted to a therapist of raping boys “on and off” soon after he was ordained as a priest in 1966.
Evidence in the form of letters filed in a civil case against another abusive priest showed that the Catholic Church protected Monsignor Garcia and several other priests who had sexually abused children. The letters describe his behavior, and document incidents including him tying up a young boy and raping him.
He assured church officials his victims were unlikely to come forward because of their immigration status. In at least one case, according to a church memo, he threatened to have a boy he had raped deported if he went to the police.
Former Archbishop of Los Angeles Roger Mahoney Mahoney wrote, “I believe that if Monsignor Garcia were to reappear here within the archdiocese we might very well have some type of legal action filed in both criminal and civil sectors.”
Monsignor Peter Garcia was included in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles’ list of priests accused of sexual misconduct involving minors. His status as a priest, his whereabouts, and whether he had access to children are unknown. He never faced prosecution.
Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Diocese of Orange in California. If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in one of California’s Catholic dioceses, contact our office today. Although many years have passed, those abused by Catholic clergy in the Diocese of Orange now have legal options due to a temporary change in California law, but filing deadlines will apply so do not delay in reaching out to us. Our lawyers have decades of experience representing survivors of clergy sexual abuse in California and nationwide. We can help.