87-Year-Old Bronx Priest Accused Of Inappropriately Touching 16-Year-Old Girl

Bronx DA: Father Jaime Duenas Said 'She Didn't Protest Giving Her A Massage'

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — A longtime priest at a Catholic church in the Bronx has been arrested, charged with sexually abusing a 16-year-old employee.

CBS 2’s John Slattery reports what’s most surprising in this case is the priest’s age.

Facing charges is Father Jaime Duenas, 87, arrested for sexually abusing a 16-year-old girl.

Former parishioner Travis Brown said he’s known Duenas since childhood.

“Some people have sick thoughts in their mind. Yeah, sick thoughts, and they need to get help if that’s the case, you know?” Brown said.

The priest is the pastor of The Nativity of Our Blessed Lady Church in the Bronx, which has a school. The teenage girl worked in the rectory, across from the church. The arrest upset parishioners.

“My daughter called me yesterday crying. She used to go there and she graduated last year,” Tyese Donaldson said.

Duenas is charged with sexual abuse, forcible touching and endangering the welfare of a child. The Bronx District Attorney’s Office quoted Duenas as saying, “She didn’t protest giving her a massage. She wore short skirts.”

The girl was apparently hired only last week and the Archdiocese of New York appears to have acted swiftly in removing the priest from his post.

A spokesman for the Archdiocese said only Wednesday did it learn of the allegations from Duenas himself, and added: “The Archdiocese of New York today suspended Father Jaime Duenas following his arrest last night on charges of inappropriate touching of a teenage girl.  He will leave the parish and will not be permitted to function as a priest, at least until the matter is resolved.”

A spokesman for the Archdiocese said a thorough review of the priest’s file indicates this is new.  There were no such allegations in the past.

The Colombian-born priest has been in New York since the late 1960s and at the parish since 1991.

Please offer your thoughts in the comments section below.

More from John Slattery
  • la

    i knew father james and i dont think he did that i go to church there and my daughter went to school there and he is a good man and wants the best for everybody

  • A Reverend Rev

    I’ve known Fr Jaime for over 20 years. Not once had he ever made advances! It’s ashame that other priests have made wrong decisions and are defiling the Christian church as a whole. It’s easy to jump on a band wagon! Why not take the harder route and listen to the whole story. By the way Fr. Jaime is in the USA legally the last I knew. God help us all when jumping on the band wagon seems tp be the American way.

    • Patrick OMalley

      Reverend Rev, I’m guessing by your name you’re another priest, and you’re protecting your pedophile pal, just like the rest of the priests do. He never made advances at you because you’re too old.

  • Pat

    It amazes me how everyone is ready to crucify the priest without hearing the whole story. It seems to me, that is what happened two thousand and eleven years ago too. I know there have been pedophile priest and I am not in any way supporting them or condoning their actions, but ALL priest are not bad. Let’s wait for the investigation to be complete and all the facts revealed before we judge.

    • Patrick OMalley

      Sure, because it isn’t enough that HE blamed it on her “wearing short skirts”. And there have only been 4,000 pedophile priests in the US alone, yet the Catholic congregation calls every new victim a liar. Let the Catholics have sympathy for another pedophile priest.

      • Patrick OMalley's Subconscious

        4000 in the USA alone? Where is that number from? I had no idea it was so bad! Oh wait! Your another one of those idiots who inflames statistics to make a point. You probably touch little boys.

      • Patrick OMalley

        Read the Catholic produced John Jay report of 2002, you cowardly little punk, and have the guts to use your real name. All you pedophiles and pedophile protectors hide in the shadows when you aren’t wearing your collars.

    • Maria

      Agree completely. In Bill of Rights – Sixth Amendment, we read of the “Right to a speedy and public trial by impartial jury”. All of these judgmental comments upset that process.

  • Patrick OMalley

    Parents – keep your children away from the Catholic church and its pedophile priests.

    We now know, by the Catholic church’s own John Jay report, that there are at least 10,000 cases of child sex abuse by priests in the US alone.

    They can’t stop, and don’t care, as you can see in the 2011 cases in Philly, Kansas City, Ireland, and dozens of other places that have broken new stories this year.

    Parents – keep your children away from the Catholic church, its pedophile priests, and its pedophile protectors.

    • Hope

      How are you to say that ? Not every ordained priest is a pedophile ! Matter of fact who says Father James is one either. I went to that school and came into close contact with him and all he did was encourage everyone and tell us we are beautiful special and imporatant. So please get your facts straight. Thanks

      • Patrick OMalley

        Except the facts are that he was accused, and as a response, he said that she was “wearing short skirts”. An innocent man doesn’t blame the victim and start coming up with excuses for his behavior.

  • KPMc

    Well… at least we got him before he fled overseas while it goes unreported here at CBS Local.

    Oh wait… that was a different clergy and that guy actually raped his own daughters. My bad.

  • itsnotme

    Oh well…”the heart wants what it wants…” Is FOX 5 going to give the priest an afternoon talk show now???

  • Loyola Alum

    The Jesuit Order in California paid $7 million in the sex assault case involving Br. Charles Connor and other Los Gatos, Calif. Jesuits allegedly abusing two IQ-challenged lifetime employees of the Jesuit Order. Br. Connor groomed the victims by giving them massages on his massage table which he obtained while living under a vow of poverty. Fr. Thomas Smolich, now the top Jesuit official in the United States in Washington, DC, was involved in the $7 million settlement. A friend of Br. Connor, Jesuit Fr. Jerold Lindner, was also alleged to have made death threats to children.

  • ProFromDover

    Holy Mole!

  • To JuanAKADirty Sanchez

    Dear JuanAKADirtySanchez. Why do you bring up the “illegal ” word. Why do you assume all immigrants are illegal??? You really need to get out of your ignorance…. really……. For your information, many people come here with their Green Card or Legal Residence approved. They are screened and their backgrounds are checked. They also get a medical exam, AND you must have finished Highschool and have at least 3 yrs of college or a specialized job with at least three years of experience. You better get informed before you open your big mouth.

    • Ed

      It cracks me up that all the illegals I know are Eastern European.

  • Truth

    Spanish priests like girls. The rest like little boys. Is it the first time being accused? Hard to believe that this would be his first time at the age of 87? Maybe she is only in it for the money. Like you guys never stared at a 16 year old’s body.

  • Bob Schwiderski

    One of the early denials we use to hear: : “he is not a problem, he’s an old man”

    Bob Schwiderski
    Minnesota SNAP Director

  • Brawler

    Gee atleast it was a female this time..Aren’t these sicko priests use to boys?


      Yeah I guess he would be considered an odd ball.

  • Man Muhballzitch

    A girl? Holy sheet this is shocking, what priest even goes near a girl? He should be punished, unlike the ordinary catholic pedos who get promoted or simply transferred to another parish!

  • Nelson

    I think all of these priests that molest kids should be arrested for a minimum of 15 years.

  • Mike

    *****An excerpt from the above article*****

    Duenas was ordained a priest in his native Columbia in 1950.

    Please *JUAN* reread the article


    • correct spelling

      Mike and Juan, READ the article should be COLOMBIA not Columbia.

    • JuanAKADirtySanchez

      Ah haha Juan. You should be ashamed of yourself. You illegals coming here and touching underaged girls.

  • Barbara A.

    Why was he at the rectory to start with? 87??? He should have an aide
    with him or be in the order’s retirement home, not interacting with anyone
    from the parish? Is he even aware of who and where he is? Come on now,
    what is wrong with the pastor, the bishop, etc. that left him there?

    • KPMc

      At what age do you suggest we put YOU at to pasture?

    • Diana

      HE IS THE PASTOR!!! Sick, isn’t it?!

    • priscilla

      interesting, Barbara. I also thought that there is a specific retirement age- as i recall, a big deal was made out of the age of the last pope who had to have a successor because of his age. also , i would have thought that any church who had a young person, male or female working in its offices, would have at least a church secretary, sexton, member of the altar guild ,or someone present or walking around in performance of their duties. also, there have been quite a few case involving inappropriate clergy vs children conduct which seem to have gone largely unpunished. i have heard of cases in which the accused cleric is simply transferred to another parish – how must those parishioners feel , especially if they read the papers and followed the news. it is only transferring the problem geographically and not solving it.

  • Aj

    All jokes aside. Who do we teach our children to trust anymore? Is there not “safe” place anymore?

    • Patrick OMalley

      Children are safer in prison than they are in a Catholic church. Prisoners at least have an internal code against child rapists.

    • no safety at all

      AJ unfortunately no, there is not.

    • Slim Pickens

      Lady Gaga?

    • joe

      good question.

  • toto

    They should rename the Rectory as the Rectum, ’cause it is all ’bout sex.

    • me me meatball

      What a meatball you are

    • me

      you should know all about rectums, being as Toto is the world’s largest manufacturers of toilets.

      • Rebel Dean

        SLAM DUDE….

  • Lance Lincoln

    Whats the lawsuit worth?

  • Jo

    A lot.
    Apparently he heard the news reports incorrectly.
    He was just a normal guy until he skimmed the newspaper title that said, “Church conspiracy covering up young molestation”.
    That was the day he decided to become a priest.

  • Rhonda

    A straight priest? Impossible!

    • Rebel Dean

      Rhonda all the other priest that did the raping were all st8, all st8 people are evel.
      and hateful.

    • drwho13

      I’ve never seen it, and his lawyer would be wise to use that as a defense.

  • Nick

    A priest molesting a … GIRL??? That’s impossible. This is obviously a false baseless accusation.

  • Michael H.

    Wait wait wait. 16 years old? That’s way too old for a priest.

    Wrong gender too. What’s wrong with this guy?

    • joe

      Good point.

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