BROWNSVILLE, Texas (AP) — A Roman Catholic leader in South Texas has expressed sorrow to relatives of a slain teacher in a 1960 killing blamed on an ex-priest who this month went to prison for the crime.

Bishop Daniel Flores of the Diocese of Brownsville on Wednesday released a statement , on behalf of the church, with prayers that the family of 25-year-old Irene Garza finds peace.

Jurors on Dec. 7 convicted 85-year-old John Bernard Feit of murder in the death of Garza, who belonged to his parish. Feit received 57 years behind bars — the number of years since Garza was raped and killed.

Flores says the Diocese of Brownsville didn't exist then and he has no special insight into what was done or not done by civil and church authorities after the crime.


This story has been corrected to show the statement was issued Wednesday, not Thursday