Priest accused of sex abuse in Rapid City expected to change his plea

RAPID CITY, S.D. — Father John Praveen, the Catholic priest accused of having sexual contact with a 13-year-old, is expected to change his plea in the coming weeks.

Praveen, who is 38, was working at the Diocese of Rapid City when he was arrested in October of 2018. He is accused of touching a 13-year-old girl above the clothes on two separate occasions.

Praveen pleaded not guilty to the allegation. He was scheduled for a status hearing this morning, but it was cancelled. Praveen now has a change of plea hearing set for February 5. It’s not yet known what he will change it to.

Praveen was bonded out of jail in December and housed in Piedmont after a local took him in. However, the electronic monitoring device he was ordered to wear didn’t receive service, and he was placed back in the Pennington County Jail.

Praveen had been working at the cathedral for several months, having moved to Rapid City in June. Prior to serving at the cathedral, Praveen worked in Eagle Butte. He is originally from India, and joined the diocese for a 10-year assignment in December of 2017.



Categories: Crime, Local News, South Dakota News