More than 14,500 pages of secret files, also referred to as the “ineligible volunteer” files, detailing 1,247 acts of alleged child sexual abuse by scoutmasters and volunteers were released by the Boy Scouts of America, one of the nation’s largest youth organizations. The files, which were released on October 18, 2012 by order of the Oregon Supreme Court, document the details of incidents involving more than 1,200 suspected child molesters over the course of decades (1965 to 1985).
The suspected perpetrators were scoutmasters and volunteers who served at various troops across the nation, including troops located in California, Georgia, Oregon, and Colorado. Statistics pulled from the files reveal disturbing numbers: of the more than 1,200 suspected child molesters, 486 of them had at some time been arrested for a sex crime. More than 530 cases indicate that the alleged perpetrator had abused more than one victim and 829 cases involved confirmation of inappropriate sexual behavior with a youth.
Some file entries, containing handwritten memos, photocopied newspaper clippings, and letters, detailed the victims’ horrific accounts of the abuse. One 10-year-old boy described how a scoutmaster talked about the virtues of scouting life as he slid his hands down the boy’s pants. Another victim described how a scoutmaster threatened to poison his food if he told others of what he had done to him.
Boy Scouts Admits it failed to Protect Scouts
Some files indicate that Boy Scouts executives were reluctant to report suspected abuse, out of fear the organizations good name would be tarnished or because they believed that not enough evidence existed to substantiate the abuse. Alarmingly, numerous files show that the Boy Scouts gave suspected abusers “second chances,” sending them to psychiatrists for help and then resigning them to another troop. Recently, the Boy Scouts had admitted that their efforts to protect scouts were “insufficient, inappropriate or wrong.”
Seeking Justice in the Civil Court System
If you or someone you know was sexually abused by a scoutmaster, volunteer, or any other member of the Boys Scouts organization, please contact a caring and compassionate nationwide child sexual assault lawyer at the law firm of Estey Bomberger. Together, we can make sure the perpetrator is held accountable in the civil court system for the horrific crime he or she has committed and make sure you are fairly compensated for the damages associated with sex abuse. We can be reached at any time of the day or night, so please call or email our firm now. There is no charge for the call or email, and consultations are free and 100 percent confidential.