Former Rapid City priest indictment related to theft of donations

Local News

RAPID CITY, S.D. (KELO) — A former Rapid City priest is accused of stealing more than $150,000.

Marcin Garbacz is behind bars in Seattle Friday night. That’s where an IRS agent caught up with him at the airport. Court papers say the former priest had a one way ticket to Poland and 10-thousand dollars cash. He’s waiting to be transferred back to South Dakota – where he served as a priest beginning in 2004.

He spent four years at St. Joseph in Faith. Court papers say the diocese moved him to Rapid City in 2012, partly because of financial mismanagement in Faith. That’s when court papers say he started going into St. Therese at night and stealing cash donations out of the vault.

The documents say he started out depositing a couple hundred dollars into his own bank account in 2012.  But, by 2013 some of the monthly deposits were more than 3-thousand dollars. 

Parish workers became suspicious, so in 2018 they used tamper-proof bags and surveillance cameras. 
The documents say Garbacz would turn off the cameras and bring his own tamper-proof bags to replace the ones he opened.

The Parish added two more cameras, which Garbacz didn’t know about. The court papers say that’s when he was caught and sent to a treatment facility for parish workers who are facing moral issues. 

If you’d like to take a closer look at the allegations, we posted the new court papers below. 

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