Feit, who had been 28 during the time of her dying, received suspicion in early stages, telling police he heard Garza’s confession — within the church rectory, away from the confessional — but denying he wiped out her.
At trial, Dale Tacheny, a tax advisor in Oklahoma City who was simply a priest in a Missouri monastery where Feit had applied to reside in 1963, stated that Feit had confessed to him he had murdered a youthful lady. Tacheny stated it had not been until years later he found that the lady Feit had described was Garza.
Now, prosecutors presented evidence that elected and church officials suspected Feit wiped out her but desired to avoid prosecuting him since it might harm the church’s status and elected officials politically. Most elected officials at that time in Hidalgo County were Catholic, and Sen. John F. Kennedy, a Catholic, was running for president that year.
Garza’s bludgeoned body was discovered days after her April 16, 1960, disappearance. An autopsy says she’d been raped while unconscious coupled with been beaten and suffocated.
Also, Feit have been charged with attacking another youthful lady inside a church inside a nearby town just days before Garza’s dying. He eventually pleaded no contest and it was fined $500.
A Hidalgo County jury deliberated 6? hrs before coming back its verdict within the murder trial of John Bernard Feit, an 85-year-old former priest, after hearing 5 days of testimony.
A stone-faced John Feit was brought in the courtroom to his city jail cell.
Defense attorney O. Rene Flores contended that prosecutors have inadequate evidence to convict Feit, who had been residing in Arizona during the time of his arrest this past year.
The jury will start hearing evidence Friday morning on which punishment Feit should receive. He or she is sentenced to as much as 99 years or existence jail time.