Boy Scouts knew more about sex abuse: Twin Cities attorney

1,538 leaders pulled from Boy Scouts over sexual abuse in Minnesota

WCCO Radio Newsroom
August 07, 2019 - 5:15 am

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Twin Cities attorney Jeff Anderson on Tuesday pleaded with a Ramsey County judge to release and make public a list of names of Boy Scout Troop leaders believed to have sexually abused children.

Anderson, who represents victims of child sex abuse, referenced a John Doe case that was settled in 2014. He told the court he wished more would have been done when they settled that case, but didn't know what the Boy Scouts knew until this year.

"Their expert, Janet Warren, said they knew of 12,000 victims and 7,800 perpetrators in their files," Anderson said. "That information alarmed us, it alarms me, and it alarms us to the extent that we seek an extraordinary order to protect the kids."

Anderson claimed that of the 1,538 alleged abusers in Minnesota, at least 12 remain working with children.

"In ministry, in charge of youth, or with current access to in their current vocation," he said. "Their names haven't been identified to anyone the public. It's been held secretly by the Boy Scouts of America in their files in Texas."

The Boy Scouts of America have said the information should not be released due to the 2014 settlement. They've also said that the suspected individuals have been reported to police. 

Anderson told reporters that even if the Boy Scouts reported the individuals, that doesn't mean the public knows about them since a report to law enforcement is private and confidential.

"Unless it's prosecuted, nobody knows who that individual is or what they've done. Only the Boy Scouts know" he said. "A report to law enforcement more often than not goes unprosecuted and those people remain in the community, which the situation is in many if not most of these cases because the statute of limitations prevents it from being investigated or prosecuted."

The judge told Anderson that while he agrees with the notion that as a society we need to protect children, there are also legal and procedural issues that could prevent him from agreeing for the names to be released.

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