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Santa Monica priest arrested for sexual battery

Rafael Venegas surrendered to Santa Monica Police on Monday, July 30, 2012, to a charge of sexual battery.

July 31, 2012 12:00:00 AM PDT
A priest at St. Anne's Church in Santa Monica was arrested and booked for sexual battery on Monday.

Authorities say the investigation into Rafael Venegas began on July 1 when a 20-year-old woman, who was not a St. Anne's parishioner, reported an incident that happened on the property of St. Anne's Parish in September 2011.

Last Thursday, Venegas was charged with one count of sexual battery and one count of furnishing alcohol to a minor.

Venegas, accompanied by his attorney, surrendered to police on Monday. He was released on $20,000 bail. An arraignment hearing has been scheduled for Friday.

Anyone with any additional information is urged to call the Santa Monica Police Department at (310) 458-8495.