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Man On Trial For Killing N.J. Priest Says Clergyman’s Abuse Forced His Hand

Jose Feliciano, 66, Claims Father Edward Hinds Abused Him For 5 Years
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Chatham, N.J. priest murdered trial

Prosecutors say this picture shows a cell phone that belonged to murdered Father Edward Hinds. (Photo: Morris County Prosecutor’s Officer))

MORRISTOWN, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — The admitted killer of a New Jersey priest took the stand Monday.

The 66-year-old former church custodian shocked the courtroom when he said that he did it after years of allegedly being abused by the priest, reports CBS 2’s Pablo Guzman.

In describing the moment Jose Feliciano said he killed Father Edward Hinds of St. Patrick’s Church in Chatham, he revealed Monday that heard voices saying “Let’s do it. Let’s do it. Let’s do it. Let’s do it. I just went crazy, crazy and I approached him. And when I approached him I stabbed him and that’s when I lost it and I know that we rolled over.”

The stabbing occurred inside the church. Feliciano, the long-time custodian, claims that at the age of 59 the priest began allegedly molesting him and it went on for five years.

“When he picked it up, I took it away from him and I sliced him in the hand I believe, just slice I said, ‘You see this father?’ And he said ‘what are you going to do about it? You are not going to hurt me.’”

The priest managed to call 911 as he was being stabbed.

The prosecution says Feliciano killed the priest when Father Hinds found out Feliciano had a past that included molesting a 7-year-old and fired him. Feliciano said he snapped because the priest had taken advantage of him.

“All this time he’s using me. And now he’s telling me he’s gonna let me go from one day to the next,” Feliciano said.

Feliciano’s lawyer does not deny that his client killed Father Hinds. But he said Feliciano reacted after suffering through years of abuse.

On Tuesday will come the much-anticipated cross examination by the prosecution.

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