- Associated Press - Wednesday, April 27, 2016

LAWTON, Okla. (AP) - A priest who pleaded guilty in 2012 to misdemeanor assault and battery in California has been removed from several Catholic churches in southwest Oklahoma.

Archbishop Paul Coakley of the Archdiocese of Oklahoma City says the Rev. Jose Alexis Davila was removed Tuesday.

Davila was hired to assist at Blessed Sacrament Catholic Church in Lawton and had roles at churches in Elgin, Apache and Sterling. He was to become pastor of Blessed Sacrament on June 28.

Parishioners protested after learning of Davila’s conviction for allegedly inappropriately touching a 19-year-old woman. He completed a sentence of probation and community service and the charge was dismissed.

Coakley initially said he believed Davila could return to the ministry, but said new information required his removal.

He did not say what the new information is.

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