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      Police: Catholic deacon, principal accused of sexually assaulting altar boy

      Ronaldo Mitchell Chavez // Mission Police Department

      A Rio Grande Valley Catholic deacon who is also a school principal was arrested after allegedly sexually abusing an altar boy, according to police.

      Ronaldo Mitchell Chavez was arrested Friday by the Mission Police Department on a charge of continuous sexual abuse of a child.

      The alleged sexual abuse of a child started when the boy was 15-years-old, police said.

      The now 17-year-old first spoke to an investigator in December where he allegedly provided a statement about the sexual abuse, according to the Mission Police Department.

      Police told Action 4 News the deacon would drop the other children off at their home, but take the then 15-year-old boy to his house where the alleged sexual encounter occurred.

      Police said the altar boy's mother said he suffered mental problems and was admitted to a healthcare facility to be examined.

      Chavez is behind bars at the Hidalgo County Jail on the felony charge, and his bond is set $10,000.

      The Mission Police Department had been investigating Chavez for about a month before they had enough information to arrest him.

      According to the Texas penal code, continuous sexual abuse is when a person commits two or more acts of sexual abuse during a time span of at least 30 days.

      According to the Juan Diego Academy Catholic Regional High School's website, Chavez has served at the Parish of San Cristobal Magallanes in Mission.

      Details on where Chavez is currently working in the educational field were not immediately made available.

      Action 4 News does not release the names of victims of sexual abuse.