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Alleged sex abuse victim sues Boy Scouts of America 7 years later

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SANTA BARBARA, Calif. -- A civil case in a Santa Barbara, Calif., courtroom could have huge implications for every Boy Scout council across the country.

It’s a sex abuse case involving a boy who was 13 years old at the time of the alleged abuse.

The prosecuting attorney wants more than 100,000 pages of secret documents detailing countless men accused of sex abuse that never made it to law enforcement to be made public.

The judge in this case ruled to allow some of the documents, the so-called “perversion” files, as evidence in trial.

In court Monday, the prosecutor pointed to a long history of sexual abuse within the Boy Scouts of America, an issue that’s been heavily documented.

Utah is part of the problem, with former Ogden school teacher and Boy Scout leader Kenneth Prince accused of sexually abusing a child more than 30 years ago.

For the first time ever, some of these reports of sexual abuse made to BSA will be made public. The files will include 16 years of documents never seen before.

“First step is putting them in front of the jury. The next step would be at the conclusion of the case fighting to have them publicized -- but we've got to get them in front of the jury first,” said prosecutor Tim Hale.

Defense attorney Greg Skordas is not involved in the case, but spoke with FOX 13 about the potential impact.

“The question for the jury is going to be, ‘given that information Boy Scouts of America, what did you do to prevent it from occurring down the road? What kind of training? What kind of education? What kind of background checks where you doing to prevent these young scouts from being abused by your scout leaders?’” Skordas said.

A statement from Boy Scouts of America reads, “The Ineligible Volunteer Files (IV) exist solely to keep out individuals whose actions are inconsistent with the standards of Scouting and Scouts are safer because those files exist. Experts have found that the BSA’s system of IV Files functions well to help protect Scouts by denying entry to dangerous individuals, and Scouting believes that they play an important role in our comprehensive youth protection system.”

As part of the ruling, records that the prosecutor does not use in trial will remain sealed. Some of those documents date back to the 1920s.

Skordas explained that if the case is ruled against the Boy Scouts of America, it could lead to a number of other civil suits against the organization from others who may have been abused.

10 comments

    • Bobfurapples

      Um….. pretty ignorant statement.
      If you think about it, homosexuals weren’t allowed in before…. that would have made the leaders straight men that were preying on children, right?
      So, wouldn’t the best answer be to ONLY allow homosexual leaders?
      And I’m pretty sure someone being homosexual doesn’t make them a pedophile.
      Get it right, buddy.

      • BOB

        By definition men who molest boys have a same $ex attraction. The BSA wants men who can set an example the young men can follow.

  • Mimi

    I know abuse like this doesn’t happen in boy scouts very often, but the fact that it sometimes happens means I will not ever feel ok about putting my son in cub scouts or boy scouts. The benefits are just not worth the risk.

    • BOB

      If you and any idea of what goes on in schools you’d never let your kids venture beyond your front door until they were 18. That would help prepare them for the real world when they finally ventured out from under your apron.

  • ANOTHERBOB

    BOBFURAPPLES – Many men who suffer from a same $ex attraction hide their problem from the world. There’s a reason why parents only want adults that don’t deviate from the norm associating with their boys. Get it right, buddy.

    • Bobfurapples

      Lol.
      I’m sorry that you feel someone being homosexual is a problem.
      I hope you don’t have children… especially ones who grow up to have a “problem”.
      Nobody is born a bigot.

      • ANOTHERBOB

        BOBFURAPPLES – Obviously people hiding in the closet must feel that they have a problem. There must be a reason why the Utah Pride Center felt the need to open a counseling and wellness clinic.

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