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Restraining Order Against Menacing Priest Issued to Diocese

A Catholic priest in California has been legally disallowed from going near his church and its employees after they alleged that he poses a danger due to reasons related to gangs and guns.

Father Guadalupe Rios has served as a priest at the Roman Catholic St. Joseph’s Church in Selma for approximately 5-years.

Recently, it was brought to the attention of the Diocese of Fresno that there was concern amongst the parishioners and staff about Rios’ engagement in possible illegal activity.

It was asserted by more than one member of the church that Rios proudly and openly displayed the assault rifles and guns that he reportedly possesses, and they believe he is in or connected to a street gang.

There was additional concern expressed about the belief that Rios regularly consumes large amounts of marijuana and alcohol.

Rios is among the estimated 50% of priests who choose not to remain celibate, and he was reportedly in a romantic relationship with an employee at St. Joseph’s.

The woman reported that Rios suffers from suicidal tendencies, and had, at one time, held her at gunpoint threatening to kill either her or himself. She also alleged that Rios was abusive to her in more than one way.

When the diocese considered all of the allegations, they filed for a restraining order against Rios, asking that the court keep him 100-feet from the church property and the employees for their safety.

Church attendants reportedly did not want to give public statements because they feared retaliatory actions, and the diocese stated that the issue “had to be addressed in a timely and forthright manner.”

The restraining order was granted by a judge on October 30.

Rios is scheduled to appear in court in January, and he will be given the chance to contest it if he chooses.

If you or someone you love is suspected of a criminal offense, contact Orange County criminal defense lawyer Staycie R. Sena at (949) 477-8088 for a consultation now.

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