A judge ruled the Woodburn priest accused of sexually abusing a 12-year-old boy will be held without bail pending trial.
Father Angel Perez, who served at St. Luke Catholic Church, was indicted by a grand jury on charges of sex abuse in the first degree, using a child in display of sexual conduct, furnishing liquor to a minor, tampering with physical evidence and DUII.
A number of parishioners attended the hearing Monday in support of the priest. One church member told FOX 12 the St. Luke community is heartbroken and remains in disbelief over the allegations.
Woodburn police say Perez is accused of abusing a boy who was sleeping over at the priest's home following a community church event. According to court documents, the boy told investigators he woke up to a flash, possibly from a cell phone camera, and saw the priest touching him, as well as touching himself.
The probable cause statement also states the boy told police he ran out of the house and was chased down the street by the priest who later drove to his family's home and begged for forgiveness.
According to investigators, Perez told police during an interview that he drank too much that night, blacked out and doesn't remember what happened, said court documents.
Parishioners describe Perez as well known and loved in the community. One church member told FOX 12 they even offered to house the priest had he been released on bail. A judge denied the request on Monday.
The national Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests released a statement, which read in part, "We're grateful that Fr. Perez is being kept locked up and away from kids."
Last week, following the priest's arrest, the Archdiocese of Portland said, "This is a very tragic and sad situation for everyone involved, and we want to keep all those involved in our prayer, as well as the parishioners of St. Luke's in Woodburn."
Perez is due back in court in September.
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