This story almost sounds like a parody, like some twisted SNL skit, but unfortunately, it's real. Around midnight last Sunday, some people were out in their yard, wrapping up a barbecue, when a 12-year-old boy came barrelling down the street, begging for help, saying that a man was chasing him. A few moments later, a man did, in fact, appear in his maroon underwear, no less, trying to get the boy to come back with him. Heather Rodriguez and her brother-in-law knew better than to hand over a scared, shaking boy to a suspicious man in his underwear, and decided to get the cops involved. It's a good thing they did, too, because the "suspicious man" who was chasing the boy was a priest who had just allegedly sexually abused the pre-teen on an air mattress in his house.
The court report says that the boy was spending the night at the priest's house before they were to embark on a camping trip together, when he woke up to find his shorts and boxers had been pulled down to his knees, that there was a hand on his genitals, and that the clergyman was there, leaning over him, with a cellphone in his hand, apparently ready to take some photos.
Thank goodness the young boy started running and yelling for help -- who knows how that night would've turned out had he not. And thank god the neighbors didn't hesitate to intervene.
Some people might have been too nervous or afraid to insult the man by assuming something fishy had gone on; some might have let the boy gone back with the mystery guy in his underwear, convincing themselves that nothing was wrong; some might have sat on that knowledge for 14 years before being forced to acknowledge that they did nothing to protect an innocent kid from a child molester.
The Penn State case showed everyone just how terrifyingly little some people will do when they're aware of an adult sexually assaulting little boys, but thankfully, there are still people like Heather and her brother-in-law that know right from wrong, and will speak up when a child's in danger.
The priest has been charged with first-degree sexual abuse.
Photo via Wiki Commons