Former church assistant held for killing Kerala catholic priest
The body of the priest, handed over to the Church authorities after autopsy, was kept in Malayattoor Church for the public to pay their last respects on Friday.india Updated: Mar 02, 2018 17:59 IST
A former church assistant who went absconding after allegedly killing a 52-year-old Catholic priest near Kochi was arrested on Friday, the police said.
The accused, Johnny Vattekkadan (56), was nabbed from a forest in Malayattoor following a massive manhunt, they said.
Police had on Thursday recovered the weapon used in committing the crime.
Fr Xavier Thelakkatt, who is also the rector of St Thomas International hill shrine ‘Kurisumudi’, was allegedly stabbed to death on Thursday by former sacristan Johnny, whom he had recently suspended from the post for “misconduct”, the police said.
Thelakkatt, who suffered grievous injuries, died while being rushed to a hospital in nearby Angamaly, they said.
The priest was attacked while he was climbing down Kurisumudy, a hilltop believed to have footprints of St Thomas, one of the Apostles of Jesus Christ.
Johnny was suspended from the post of sacristan some weeks ago for his alleged misconduct.
The body of the priest, handed over to the Church authorities after autopsy, was kept in Malayattoor Church for the public to pay their last respects on Friday.
The funeral would be held in East Cheranallore tomorrow, a Church spokesman said.