Boise & Garden City

Trial date set for retired Boise priest accused of two dozen crimes

The Rev. W. Thomas Faucher, pictured here at a March 13, 2018, hearing, pleaded guilty on Friday to five charges.
The Rev. W. Thomas Faucher, pictured here at a March 13, 2018, hearing, pleaded guilty on Friday to five charges. Statesman archive photo

The Rev. W. Thomas Faucher pleaded not guilty to two dozen crimes, including distribution of child pornography, in 4th District Court Friday morning.

Judge Jason Scott set a trial date for Aug. 6 — and it’s expected to take four full days at the Ada County Courthouse in Boise.

Faucher, 72, is being held at the Ada County Jail on $1 million bond.

The amended criminal complaint shows that Faucher is charged with 24 crimes: 21 counts of felony sexual exploitation of a child, one count of felony possession of a controlled substance (LSD) and two counts of misdemeanor possession of a controlled substance (marijuana and ecstasy). The sexual exploitation charges include 18 for alleged possesion of child porn, three for alleged distribution of child porn.

Faucher was arrested Feb. 2 on 14 charges involving possessing and sharing child pornography, and drug possession. Since his arrest, two people have come forward to authorities to accuse Faucher of child sexual abuse 40 years ago

Faucher hasn’t been charged in those two cases — and prosecutors may not be able to due to the statute of limitations.

Faucher was out of jail on $250,000 bond until his last court appearance, when prosecutors announced the filing of additional charges and asked the judge to increase bail. Prosecutors said they found more than 2,000 images and videos of child pornography on Faucher’s devices.

Magistrate Judge James Cawthon raised bail to $1 million.

All but one of the crimes is alleged to have occurred in early 2018, between Jan. 17 and Feb. 2, the complaint shows. The first count of distributing material that’s sexually exploitative of a child under 18 is alleged to have occurred on or about Nov. 1, 2017.

Gene Fadness, spokesman of Diocese of Boise, shared that parishioners at St. Mary's were 'deeply sadden' by the news of Rev. W. Thomas Faucher's arrest.

Judge Scott told Faucher that if convicted of the crimes he faces life in prison (up to 275 years for all charges) and $337,000 in fines.

A pre-trial conference date was set for 11 a.m. July 20, and status update conference for 10 a.m. June 1.

Katy Moeller: 208-377-6413, @KatyMoeller

Help the Statesman investigate

Since Father Thomas Faucher’s arrest on Feb. 2, two people have come foward to authorities to accuse the retired priest of sexual abuse 40 years ago.

The Idaho Statesman would like to speak to anyone who was abused by Faucher. Your conversation with us can be confidential. You can make a difference by sharing your story.

Please contact Reporter Katy Moeller: 208-377-6413, or e-mail, kmoeller@idahostatesman.com.

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