The aggravated sexual assault conviction of the Rev. Thomas Teczar has been overturned by an appeals court, but the Eastland County district attorney said the former Fort Worth Roman Catholic Diocese priest will be tried again.
Teczar was sentenced last year to 25 years in prison for three counts of aggravated sexual assault of a child and indecency for molesting and raping an 11-year-old boy in Eastland several years ago.
The 11th Court of Appeals found that the prosecution did not adequately prove that one of its witnesses, a man who testified that he was abused by Teczar, was also an expert witness.
"Certainly I was disappointed," Eastland County District Attorney Russ Thomason said Wednesday. "I'm confident once again we'll seek and get justice. We've got a good case."
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The witness in question is David Lewcon, co-founder of the New England chapter of Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests. He testified that Teczar, a priest at the church Lewcon attended in Massachusetts, began abusing him when he was 16 or 17.
Lewcon sought out Teczar's accuser in the Eastland County criminal case and offered him assistance before the accuser went to the authorities.
At trial, Teczar's attorney, Edwin Youngblood of Fort Worth, raised questions about Lewcon's motivation for testifying, saying that hate and rage had compelled him.
"Is there no forgiveness?" Youngblood asked.
"He's forgiven," Lewcon answered. "What he did, is not."
Thomason said he will likely bring Lewcon back to testify again but will handle his testimony differently.