Sacto 9-1-1
December 2, 2011
Priest arraigned in Sacramento on 7 counts of child molestation

20111202_ha_URIEL_OJEDA0152.JPGA Catholic priest beloved by churchgoers in Woodland was arraigned this afternoon in Sacramento on seven counts of child molestation.

PHOTO GALLERY: Priest's supporters at arraignment

The Rev. Uriel Ojeda, who was assigned to a church in Woodland before being transferred to Redding, did not enter a plea in the brief proceeding in Sacramento Superior Court. He spoke only to confirm his name, and to confirm that he knew the identity of his accuser, whose name has been sealed.

About a dozen supporters showed up on Ojeda's behalf. They could be heard whimpering quietly as Ojeda entered the locked cell in the courtroom.

Ojeda surrendered to Sacramento police Wednesday night. He is accused of lewd and lascivious acts with a 14-year-old girl on four different dates in 2007 and 2009.

The Sacramento Diocese learned of the molestation allegations Tuesday, when a relative of the teen told a church member. The diocese then contacted county Child Protective Services and Sacramento police.

Ojeda's attorney, Jesse Ortiz, asked that people "not make any judgements on this case until all the facts are known.

"Father Ojeda is a good man who has dedicated his life to helping people," he said.

Ojeda was ordained about four years ago in Sacramento.

Photo Caption: Rev. Uriel Ojeda with his attorney, Jesse Ortiz, left, appears at his arraignment in Sacramento Superior Court on Friday afternoon. Photo by Hector Amezcua / hamezcua@sacbee.com

Related:
Priest jailed on suspicion of molesting 14-year-old girl in Sacramento

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