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4 men sue Boy Scouts, LDS church in Idaho

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  • Christopher B Ogden, UT
    June 24, 2013 4:25 p.m.

    Another sad example of why the BSA recently ruled as they did in regards to leaders.

  • Tators Hyrum, UT
    June 24, 2013 4:38 p.m.

    A dearth of information in this press release. For instance, when were these alleged incidences supposed to have taken place... and under what circumstances? Also, for what reasons are these alleged victims hiding their identity? None of that was explained at all.

  • Chris B Salt Lake City, UT
    June 24, 2013 4:56 p.m.

    I can't figure why the BSA won't allow gay leaders.

  • im4kids AUSTIN, TX
    June 24, 2013 5:07 p.m.

    Gay or straight - good men (or women) will not allow these things to happen. Unfortunately even with the BSA precautions bad things do happen. 41 years ago? Go to counseling, build a bridge, get over it. I hope these men can come to grips with what happened, confront the actual perps and start building a healthy life for themselves.

  • OnlyInUtah Cottonwood Heights, UT
    June 24, 2013 6:53 p.m.

    Why didn't they bring this up until now? I hope the courts see it as the money grab it is. It's difficult to believe these men haven't come to grips with it in 41 years. I'm not saying it wouldn't be traumatic but 41 years? Give me a break.

  • AZ Blue & Red Gilbert, AZ
    June 24, 2013 6:53 p.m.

    If true this is sad and the offenders should be prosecuted if possible. But this was so long ago that to me it looks more like a way to make some money. Find the old leaders and deal with them. But I question the law suit this many years later. Sounds like lawyers in need of a paycheck.

  • Hank Saint George, UT
    June 24, 2013 7:06 p.m.

    Story makes much more sense now that more info has been revealed and the original story made longer.

  • Richard Larson Galt, CA
    June 24, 2013 8:05 p.m.

    christopher b.
    Yeah, that is EXACTLY why.
    Despite countless studies and
    overwhelming evidence to the contrary....

  • trekker Salt Lake, UT
    June 24, 2013 9:27 p.m.

    Assuming they are telling the truth about abuse, no amount of money will make that experience go away. In my opinion, they should only get enough to cover therapy. Honestly after so long how can they win? there is no evidence only his word verses another. Shouldn't the statute of limitations kicked in by now. If they needed help they should have brought it up much sooner not decades later. At this point they just want money let get rich by suing organizations. I know the LDS Church will pay for or get you counseling if you ask. so its obvious it not about getting help.

  • bdckpakccd Plano, TX
    June 24, 2013 9:35 p.m.

    I echo the "moneygrab" sentiment. Not naming the perpetrators, but suing the organizations, says, "We're after the deep pocket." No one is saying the abuse didn't happen, but after this length of time, this isn't about recovery the way they are going about it.

  • Mainly Me Werribee, 00
    June 24, 2013 9:35 p.m.

    @im4kids

    "Go to counseling, build a bridge, get over it."

    Have you ever been raped? Or sexually abused?

    I'm a male survivor of rape and molestation from 50 years ago and you don't just get over it. My abusers were one male and two females. This type of abuse changes you permanently. No amount of counseling or happy happy, joy joy thoughts will ever change what happened to me. I'm over most of it, but I'm forever changed. I ask myself, "What would I be like now if I had never been raped?"

    I still have problems and the occasional nightmare. I don't trust people and I have social phobia. To say your comment is a bit insensitive would be the classic British understatement.

  • Common-Tator Saint Paul, MN
    June 24, 2013 9:37 p.m.

    Would that we could find perfect leaders in every instance for BSA, and all other institutions. If / when such incidents do happen, however (and once proven to be such in the only court system in the world in which one might be fairly judged), those involved must be held fully accountable.

    But that relies on an awfully big "might".

  • BroJoseph Ogden, UT
    June 24, 2013 10:09 p.m.

    Can any amount of passed time relinquish the scope of punishment and renumeration? Abuse and anquish suggests otherwise

  • EdGrady Idaho Falls, ID
    June 24, 2013 10:31 p.m.

    Just curious - why wasn't the Elks Club in Lewiston included in the lawsuit?

  • The Rock Federal Way, WA
    June 24, 2013 10:37 p.m.

    How can the LDS church or the Boy Scouts possibly defend themselves against these allegations? The perps are probably dead after so many years. There is certainly no physical evidence, unless there are "identifying markings" on the perps.

    This will become a case of the word of the alleged victims against that of the two organizations.

    I also fail to understand why our court system insists on holding people and organizations responsible for things that other people did. Organizations can only do so much. They can screen leaders and youth. They can institute a buddy system. There is not way to prevent people from making false accusations.

    If I were the judge I would through the case out after so many decades. If the witnesses are dead you cannot discover the truth.

  • Fullypresent Salt Lake City, UT
    June 24, 2013 11:05 p.m.

    Sad part is there are still some people that cover it up or deal with it only in the Church to protect leaders or people well connected so they won't be prosecuted. It is a copout to say they have just learned a lot the past few years about dealing with it. They did not want to deal with it until they were forced to deal with it from lawsuits. Even then it has taken many for them to get the message that protecting kids is more important than protecting adults.

  • hubbardesquire Alabaster, Alabama
    June 24, 2013 11:16 p.m.

    Sounds like to me that this case will be summarily dismissed. I hope the defendants file a motion for sanctions. It will be a piece of cake to get the sanctions imposed upon these plaintiff lawyers.

  • Tom in CA Vallejo, CA
    June 24, 2013 11:58 p.m.

    The LDS Church does not "turn a blind eye", and has absolutely ZERO tolerance in these types of matters. I believe it will be extremely difficult to implicate, or prove The Mormon Church was negligent. As to the individual scout leaders, that may be a different story.

    The plaintiff's attorneys are going for deep pockets. Will be interesting to follow this one.

  • UtahBlueDevil Durham, NC
    June 25, 2013 4:48 a.m.

    Folks... I agree it sounds like a money grab, but like in the Penn State case, there may be circumstances here we don't have right now. We don't know how far up the authority chain knowledge of these events went, and what actions were not taken back then, that should have.

    At this point, I am willing to give all the parties on both sides the benefit of the doubt.

    That said, stuff like this is exactly why I try to avoid working with you any more. How do you defend yourself against claims like these some 20, 30 or 40 years later. You can't.

  • wwookie Payson, UT
    June 25, 2013 6:18 a.m.

    Two points...

    1) the fact this happened years ago doesn't excuse a crime. Don't judge these men, that is the reason there is due process.

    2) it seems irresponsible for these men to go after the BSA and LDS church and not the perpetrators. The only case that seems valid is where the man claims the church leadership called a previously known pedophile to be scout master. But even then, the "church leader" was a volunteer and wasn't professional clergy.

  • jevo ,
    June 25, 2013 6:29 a.m.

    And the purpose of your lawsuit is what? Greed! It's too bad it happened at all, but to file a lawsuit where the only goal is to get money is wrong. Move on.

  • raybies Layton, UT
    June 25, 2013 6:48 a.m.

    I know of someone who fought legally to change things back in that era because she discovered this abuse going on. There are probably hundreds of additional victims who have not requested any sort of compensation for the abuse they suffered back in that era.

    The LDS church takes every one of these cases VERY seriously now. When they first surfaced there was a lot of resistance to it, but things have changed in the past four decades. We talk openly about these topics, hoping that victims will come forward and will expose these heinous acts, so that the perpetrators and the victims can get the help they need.

    I hope these people who are suing will be able to find some sort of solace, because money is not going to fix everything, and if this is all about punishing the LDS church, well, besides attacking the wrong target, it will never bring healing.

  • NedGrimley Brigham City, UT
    June 25, 2013 7:19 a.m.

    wwookie: "...the man claims the church leadership called a previously known pedophile to be scout master." Please go back and re-read the article...

  • Charles.Reese FULTON, MO
    June 25, 2013 7:21 a.m.

    I am disturbed by this lawsuit. I know the church has zero tolerance for this type of behavior and is not accepted in any form.In saying that, I to believe that this is a money grab as well. Many individuals in our country and around the world know that the church is well funded. What they don't know is that the funds are scared. The Lord's church has no paid clergy and most members give a great deal of their time in serving in a pleasing manner or at least they strive to. And the BSA has always tried to keep a high standard when it comes to their leadership.

    However, since these allegations have come forward now, perhaps it will open the eyes of many regarding the homosexual debate.

  • Cats Somewhere in Time, UT
    June 25, 2013 7:41 a.m.

    Clearly, known homosexuals should NEVER be allowed to serve a scout leaders.

    After all these years, I think it's obvious that this is a money grab. These accusers and their lawyers are going after the deep pockets. If these men were victimized, I'm sorry for them, but a lawsuit like this is pointless and will do nothing to help anyone after all these years. I hope the case is summarily dismissed.

  • RBB Sandy, UT
    June 25, 2013 7:48 a.m.

    These are tough cases. On the one hand you feel for any victim of abuse. On the other, there has been a guilty until proven innocent approach to these cases. Every scout leader knows that they are one false accusation away from having their reputation destroyed. Proving the negative is always difficult, but 28 years later is next to impossible. The law should really put a statute of limitations at 3 years after the alleged victims turn 18. Additionally, there should be limits on the liability of organizations that have programs in place to prevent sich things. Every 2 years all scout leaders have to take courses on avoiding such things. It is a volunteer organization that helps millions of boys. It is too bad that these attorneys see it as the deep pocket. I hope they take the case all the way to trial

  • LindonMan Lindon, UT
    June 25, 2013 7:56 a.m.

    Can you say "money grab?"

  • procuradorfiscal Tooele, UT
    June 25, 2013 8:01 a.m.

    Re: "Why didn't they bring this up until now? I hope the courts see it as the money grab it is."

    This press release has but one motive -- the trial attorneys are seeking other victims to add to the plaintiff list, making it more likely BSA and the Church will settle, rather than defend this highly questionable action.

    Follow the money.

  • IndeMak South Jordan, UT
    June 25, 2013 8:06 a.m.

    If it happened, it's very sad and the abusers need to be prosecuted.

    Why wait til now? The accusers are in their 40's. I believe the jury will see it as many of us are seeing it.

  • amazondoc USA, TN
    June 25, 2013 8:37 a.m.

    @Chris --

    "I can't figure why the BSA won't allow gay leaders."

    I can't either, Chris!

    Most likely, the abusers in these cases were married, "normal"-appearing members of their communities.

    To compare, here's a few cases of abuse within the BSA from the last several years ("year" is of the article -- not the year of the crime):

    2012 (conviction 1999), Philadelphia -- married, prominent LDS member
    2011, Pueblo -- divorced (not a leader)
    2009, Orem -- married scout leader
    2005, New York -- married scout leader, prominent Baptist church member
    2002, Denver/New York -- married scout leader

    Statistics from the Child Advocacy Center show that 75% of all male child molesters are "married or have consenting sexual relationships (with women)" and that "only about 4 percent of same-sex abuse involves homosexual perpetrators".

    A classic study in the Archives of Sexual Behavior demonstrated that "sexual orientation was not related to the sex of the victim targeted" and that "men who molested boys often had adult relationships with women".

    In reality, there is more risk from scouts and scout leaders who appear to be "normal heterosexuals" than from people who are open and honest about their homosexuality.

  • cassadove Tampa, FL
    June 25, 2013 8:43 a.m.

    For hese plaintiffs to go after the Church is a far stretch at best. In cases of abuse and sexual assault, usually the victims go after the individuals who did it, not an organization that can't be proved responsible. Despite the close relationship that's found between the Church and the BSA, the two are not synonymous or interchangeable. The plaintiffs are going to be very hard pressed to find evidence that the Church instigated the alleged abuse, as well as physical proof that the abuse happened. It was so long ago - if the information in the article is correct - that I highly doubt any physical proof will be found. "He said, she said" type cases tend to get thrown out very easily, because circumstantial evidence is so flimsy in the eye of the law

  • MGB Saint George, UT
    June 25, 2013 8:45 a.m.

    At age 16 I was abused by my senior home teaching companion. I only allowed it to happen one time and immediately reported him to my bishop. He fled and I never even thought of sueing the church for his individual actions. His sins never bothered me. That wsa 51 years ago. 27 to 41 years later is a little late for these men to be sueing for money when they should have resolved it many years ago.

  • J-TX Allen, TX
    June 25, 2013 8:47 a.m.

    Why wasn't the Elk's Club named as a defendant? No Money.

    "they happened between 28 and 41 years ago and the plaintiffs aren't named."

    Hmmmmm.... 4 or 5 of my Scoutmasters exposed themselves to me 35 years ago. I guess it's time for my pay day!!! Or maybe they were just peeing on a tree.....

    I WAS sexually abused as a child, though not by a Scout or Church leader, so I know whereof I speak when I say this case is not about healing, it is about money. Otherwise they would have named names and gone after the individuals.

  • activ2004 Clearfield, UT
    June 25, 2013 8:47 a.m.

    This is just another pathetic example of how selective outrage and hypocrisy of the free press and evil agendas are being selectively pushed in our faces.

    If all the bleeding hearts, including the attorneys and accusers and media, were sincerely against pedophilia, child sexual molestation and slavery, they might gain credibility by going after the real plague rather than exposing their hateful, evil, anti-god, "freedom of religion" bogus agenda in the front pages.

    Go ahead, make my day by exposing the tens of thousands of real cases of pedophilia in the sexual progressive’s world and horrific cases of child sexual torture and violence and human trafficking, then perhaps maybe what was to me bogus propaganda will actually turn into a proactive remedy to the evil sexual plagues of today.

  • boatersteve Fruit Heights, Utah
    June 25, 2013 8:52 a.m.

    First, abuse of any kind is wrong, as one of Americas most notorious criminals said I rob banks becasue that is where the money is, well Boy Scouts is where the boys are. Most people do not realize that a boy is 4 times safer from child abuse in a Scouting activity than in his own home. However it seems no amount of counseling or other help is adequate until the sleezy lawyers jump in with the "green salve" then miraculously everything seems to be ok. Sad bordering on disgusting.

  • Hey It's Me Salt Lake City, UT
    June 25, 2013 8:53 a.m.

    An organization or business can only know so much about the employee or volunteer, so until something actually happens, they don't know there is a problem. If they get rid of the individual after things are exposed then the victim needs to go after the individual who assaulted them, not the organization. I don't know why all of a sudden they all felt like they needed to bring this to trial at one time. Have these individuals been friends for all these years and talked about this or did the lawyers advertise a lawsuit? More info is needed.I do believe they were abused but it's strange that they all came forward together. I hope they can move on and get the help (mentally that they need)

  • arand Huntsville, u
    June 25, 2013 9:19 a.m.

    OK, So I went to a Catholic school back in the '50's. If I needed or just wanted money, could I come up with a lie now and say I was molested? Good grief! I'll bet a lot more money grabbers and scumbag lawyers are drooling over this one.

    Yes, these pedifiles need to be stopped, but not 40 years later. What is the point?

  • bzachary provo, UT
    June 25, 2013 9:23 a.m.

    Please don't invalidate the awful, life changing experiences these men went through; let the courts pass judgement.

  • John Pack Lambert of Michigan Ypsilanti, MI
    June 25, 2013 9:31 a.m.

    We need to take precautions and protections seriously. We need to do all we can to prevent abuse of any kind.

    When abuse does occur it should be reported to the police as quickly as possible.

  • J-TX Allen, TX
    June 25, 2013 9:40 a.m.

    Amazondoc said, "only about 4 percent of same-sex abuse involves homosexual perpetrators".

    and then said, "In reality, there is more risk from scouts and scout leaders who appear to be "normal heterosexuals" than from people who are open and honest about their homosexuality."

    Way to spin statistics, Doc, but since the general populace is 2% gay, their share of same-sex abuse is twice what it should be per capita.

    While it is true that there are more total numbers of sicko heterosexual men who commit same-sex child abuse, don't try to paint it as boys being safer with homosexual leaders. It is plainly untrue.

    By your statistics, if volunteering in equal numbers, more boys would be molested by gay scout leaders than by straight ones.

  • Woody Newbury Park, CA
    June 25, 2013 10:27 a.m.

    I have the utmost sympathy for the victims of this abuse. No matter how late, they are entitled to justice. The Oregon firm representing them specializes in this type of law suit. They recently got a $19 million judgement against the BSA. One tactic they use is to sue for a few individuals to obtain the institutions records and finances. Then they can chase down additional clients. This suit is the first slash in a death by a thousand cuts.

  • Truthseeker SLO, CA
    June 25, 2013 10:42 a.m.

    Obviously we don't know the facts, yet.

    For example:

    Were there resources available for background checks of scout leaders?
    Did the perpetrators have a prior history?
    Did the Church avail themselves of background checks?

    When/if were local Church leaders made aware of the abuse?
    If they were made aware what did they do?

    Sexual abuse of children is life-altering and can be devastating to the victims.

    My sister and I were sexually molested--groped by sales person in a UT store in the presence of my mother (apparently she was unaware it was happening) when we were young (probably ages 6-8?) At the time it happened I didn't know it was wrong--all i knew was that I didn't like it and never wanted to go back to that store. As long as I lived in UT if we ever drove by that store I got a sick and panicked feeling. It was only when I was in my mid-late twenties, living in another state, that I recognized what had happened as abuse--and also found out the same thing had happened to my sister.

  • Truthseeker SLO, CA
    June 25, 2013 10:49 a.m.

    Think about how devastating it is when a young person is molested by church or community leaders. Imagine sitting in church--looking at your molester every week while they are accepted and afforded respect by other leaders and adults. What does that do to one's soul? What does that do to one's sense of trust? What does that do to one's relationship and belief in God?

    There is no doubt in my mind that too often--at least in the past--these incidents were treated by bishops or other leaders as personal "repentance" issues and not reported to law enforcement authorities.

    Again, we don't know the facts.

  • J in AZ San Tan Valley, AZ
    June 25, 2013 11:23 a.m.

    In the time frame that these individuals are reporting that they were abused, the BSA did not have a systematic program of background checks for adult leaders. That was implemented 13 or 14 years ago. The LDS Church really didn't have any kind of digital membership system until at the earliest the late 1980's. In that environment, it was vastly more difficult to track people who should never be allowed near youth. Also, society didn't look at the problem of abuse in the same way that we do not. That being said, the actual abusers in these cases should be brought to trial if at all possible. But, as long as the BSA and the Church can show that local officers acted according to the established policies and laws of the day, the suits against them should be thrown out.

  • snowman Provo, UT
    June 25, 2013 11:33 a.m.

    Money is at the root of these allegations. The Church does not sponser all BSA units.

  • snowman Provo, UT
    June 25, 2013 11:36 a.m.

    Cats: Just because a person is gay, it doesn't mean that they are child molestors

  • Bootsy SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    June 25, 2013 11:44 a.m.

    The plaintiffs CAN'T go after the perpetrators because the statute of limitations passed decades ago. That's why they're going for the deep pockets of the BSA and LDS church. I agree that the Elk's Club should also be named in the lawsuit since they were the sponsor of one of the four scout troops.

    If this lawsuit were being brought to show that there is a weakness in the program that needs to be fixed, I would understand it, but in the decades since this happened, the scout organizations have implemented a lot of preventative measures to keep these things from happening. This says to me they're not trying to prove a point but to get money. No, it should have have happened; yes, it's a tragedy; no, they probably haven't gotten over it and maybe never will. But the only ones who will benefit in this situation are the lawyers, who will pocket 1/3 of whatever money is won. Greed rules.

  • Truthseeker SLO, CA
    June 25, 2013 12:00 p.m.

    From the DN article:

    "The Boy Scouts began keeping files on people who were deemed ineligible to volunteer for the organization — because they molested children, stole money from the organization or committed other transgressions — as early as 1920, according to the lawsuit. Thousands of those files have since been publicly released as former Scouts sued the organization over sexual abuse.

    The men contend that the existence of those files shows the Boy Scouts of America knew Scouts faced a real risk of abuse. They say the BSA's failure to warn prospective and current Scouts, their parents and others shows a pattern of fraud and misrepresentation. Likewise, the men say the LDS Church knew that some of its Scoutmasters and troop leaders had molested boys in the past and that it nevertheless continued to put boys in harms' way."

  • Christopher B Ogden, UT
    June 25, 2013 12:22 p.m.

    @snowman,

    "Cats: Just because a person is gay, it doesn't mean that they are child molestors"

    No one said it does.

    How many times do we have to go over this?

    Similarly, being a heterosexual male does not make someone a child molestor.

    And yet men shouldn't be taking the neighbor girls camping with them.

  • Contrarius Lebanon, TN
    June 25, 2013 12:51 p.m.

    @Chris --

    "men shouldn't be taking the neighbor girls camping with them."

    NO adults should take ANY children camping alone -- regardless of gender or orientation.

    @J-TX --

    "since the general populace is 2% gay, their share of same-sex abuse is twice what it should be per capita."

    Actually, the percentage of gay people in the US population is roughly 3-5% -- depending on locale and what technique you use to make the estimation. In some areas, in fact, the percentage rises over 10%. (check the wikipedia page "LGBT demographics of the United States" for more details).

    "don't try to paint it as boys being safer with homosexual leaders. It is plainly untrue."

    Fortunately, I never did any such thing.

    What I actually said was that abusers are more likely to APPEAR to be "normal heterosexuals" -- regardless of what their actual orientation may be.

    One constant amongst abusers is that they hide behind a camouflage of normalcy.

    Therefore, the men who are honest and open about being gay aren't the ones the BSA needs to worry about. The abusers are going to people people who LOOK like "normal, heterosexual" members of the community.

  • Ernest T. Bass Bountiful, UT
    June 25, 2013 1:03 p.m.

    If it is determined that it happened I hope they are awarded a lot of money.

  • mare54 KIHEI, HI
    June 25, 2013 1:12 p.m.

    Sadly....there is good and bad everywhere...including the Mormon church. Do you really think that these are isolated incidents? How many people do you estimate have had similar incidents happen to them and they are not coming forward like this? The only thing that raises my eyebrows about this is that these men are coming forward so late and asking for monetary damages. It's just as bad to have a bishop making young girls sit on his lap in his office and have them kiss him on the cheek, even though nothing specific happened. There should be a policy that no minor child go into a church office by themselves....ever....but we are also conditioned to trust church leaders to be appropriate. Sadly humans are well, human, and they don't always make the best decisions, even church leaders.

  • Duh west jordan, ut
    June 25, 2013 1:21 p.m.

    If true, this was a horrible act committed by men, not organizations no matter who they are. Knowingly putting a child in harms way is another issue. In my mind, this is nothing but a money grab ploy as others have suggested. These individuals should be going after the perps who committed the crime if still alive and put them in jail. Why wait until now and why hide your names? Though I am not a big supporter of the BSA, I am against law suits on issues that are so old, it is impossible to prove unless the perps (if alive) confess to the crimes then, it is still the perps fault, not the organization. Just another example of how society today will sue for whatever reason a lawyer can give them in order to obtain a paycheck.

  • oldschooler USA, TX
    June 25, 2013 1:30 p.m.

    If scouting is such a great program for boys, why not having a girl scouts program as well? With the Changes in BSA I can see this coming more and more, one very good reason why LDS churh should not be affiliated to BSA. Why do not create a church scouting program of our own? That way we set the rules and do not have to answer to any other organization. We are missing this one.

  • patriot Cedar Hills, UT
    June 25, 2013 1:58 p.m.

    This is just one of MANY reasons why I personally attended each and every camp trip my son went on while a scout. I don't trust anyone with my 12 year old except myself and neither should any other parent. If I am a single mom then I make certain I am comfortable with all the leaders taking care of my son. This sort of thing should never happen but people are people and evil doesn't confine itself to any religious group.

  • casual observer Salt Lake City, UT
    June 25, 2013 2:11 p.m.

    The length of time since the reported violation took place makes one wonder, if this was a traumatic or illegal event, why wait so long if the plaintiffs have been suffering? The option for legal redress has been well known for decades. Something is missing from this story.

  • WHAT NOW? Saint George, UT
    June 25, 2013 2:25 p.m.

    Questions...

    After 41 years, how is this lawsuit going to fix anything?

    How can these claims be verified?

    If the claims can't be verified, can those accused receive monetary damages from the accusers?

    I appreciate those who made comments letting the rest of us know how the money angle works for the law firms as well as the accusers.

    I invite anyone to answer my three questions.

    Thanks.

  • 1978 Salt Lake City, UT
    June 25, 2013 2:49 p.m.

    @J-TX

    I would also add that if you look at amazondoc's own statistics quoted from the child advocacy center, 25% of all abuse occurs by people not engaged in a heterosexual lifestyle. Not to mention that some of those in a heterosexual relationship could be bisexual.

    Other studies such as that quoted in "Archives of Sexual Behavior" by W.D. Erickson of 229 convicted child molestors stated that 86% of the respondants considered themselves as either homosexual or bisexual.

    Somehow that 4% number just didn't pass the common sense test with me.

  • Truthseeker SLO, CA
    June 25, 2013 2:50 p.m.

    October 2012 the BSA released 20,000 pages of documents relating to alleged instances of sexual abuse by more than 1,200 perpetrators within the organization.

    The documents were ordered to be produced by an Oregon judge in separate litigation, tried in 2010, resulting in an $18.5 million punitive damages award against the BSA.

    Most children are abused by someone they know and trust.
    An estimated 60% of perpetrators of sexual abuse are known to the child but are not family members, e.g., family friends, babysitters, childcare providers, neighbors.
    About 30% of perpetrators are family members, e.g., fathers, brothers, uncles, cousins.
    Just 10% of perpetrators are strangers to the child.
    In most cases, the perpetrator is male regardless of whether the victim is a boy or girl.
    Some CDC research has estimated that approximately 1 in 6 boys and 1 in 4 girls are sexually abused before the age of 18.
    However, accurate statistics on the prevalence of sexual abuse of children and adolescents are difficult to collect because it is vastly underreported and there are differing definitions of what constitutes sexual abuse.
    Boys (and later, men) tend not to report their victimization, which may affect statistics.

  • Eliyahu Pleasant Grove, UT
    June 25, 2013 3:12 p.m.

    There are good reasons that we have a statute of limitations on both civil and criminal actions. If you were accused of doing something thirty or forty years ago, how could you possibly defend yourself? And for the accusers, how do they expect to prove their case? No witnesses, no physical evidence, just someone saying something happened. Try to account for your whereabouts on, let's say, the month of August, 1981. Or account for every moment of every day during all the scout activities in the summer of 1978. No one can do it, and it's unreasonable to expect them to do so.

  • 1978 Salt Lake City, UT
    June 25, 2013 3:23 p.m.

    @amazondoc

    "Statistics from the Child Advocacy Center show that 75% of all male child molesters are "married or have consenting sexual relationships (with women)" and that "only about 4 percent of same-sex abuse involves homosexual perpetrators"."

    Another way to look at these statistics is that 25% of all male child molesters are not involved in consenting sesual relationships with women. An unknown percentage of the 75% could also be bisexual.

    Another study in this area was quoted in "Archives of Sexual Behavior". The study was performed by W.D. Erickson in "Behaviors Patterns of Child Molestors". In his study of 229 convicted child molestors, 86% considered themselves as homosexuals or bisexuals.

  • kargirl Sacramento, CA
    June 25, 2013 5:39 p.m.

    Thirty, forty, even only twenty years ago, did we not all think of our leaders as pretty much the reigning authority figures, especially in Church, and especially as young as ten, twelve, fourteen, in our youth programs? And did our parents not encourage this in us? Most of these adults never gave us reason for doubt. And truth be told, they were bigger, stronger, smarter, even funny sometimes. They were often the ones we looked up to. So why would we not be asking ourselves, as these boys--or any victims might--who was going to believe us? Who would believe that we didn't run away, if it were true? How do we know what scenarios played over and over in the heads of these men when they were so young then? What would YOU, dear reader, be thinking? I can't begin to imagine, were I in one of their places. And considering that it was same gender, and given the way of thinking at the time, and that it was Idaho, and most were LDS, do you really think the boys would have been believed?

  • hermounts Pleasanton, CA
    June 25, 2013 6:04 p.m.

    They really shouldn't be allowed to sue this long after the fact

  • dennyofoz Australia, 00
    June 25, 2013 7:36 p.m.

    Very sad and should be dealt with, if possible, if proven to be true. I think it should be mentioned though that in the cases where the alleged abuse took place 3 or 4 decades ago, the scout leaders, BSA officials, church leaders, etc, in many cases may be dead by now and unable to defend themselves.

  • K Mchenry, IL
    June 25, 2013 8:39 p.m.

    Funny. If it were the catholic church would your opinion be the same?

    They could be alerting prosecution of the men involved.

  • Maui WAILUKU, HI
    June 25, 2013 9:09 p.m.

    To Mainly Me,

    I truly understand the deep wounds of abuse but cannot understand in anyway shape or form how money unearned will make the hurt go away. Especially after so many years. Raise awareness but suing for money is beyond ridiculous.

  • Little Andy Tremonton, UT
    June 26, 2013 7:01 a.m.

    Money chasers... This many years later??? If you want money let's hear your names.

  • jimhale Eugene, OR
    June 26, 2013 7:47 a.m.

    We have no idea of the truth of these accusations, but the incidents are appalling to us all.

    One can only hope that, if true, each are dealt with fairly. It sounds like each took place before Scouting's two-deep leadership rule was widely followed.

    If the accusations are true, these and others like them must be seen against the larger question of who can be trusted to be an adult Scout leader. The BSA recently made the decision to affirm that youth with a same-gender attraction can be Scouts so long as they do not act on that attraction. But they also decided to continue the ban on homosexual Scout leaders.

    Gay rights advocates see that last decision as being only temporary.

    Gay rights advocates strenuously argue that alleged perpetrators such as these are examples of pedophilia but not examples of homosexuality.

    In the Nineteenth Century, men at 18 or 21 often married women of 16. We now consider that to not be good social policy.

    It is tough to see the abuse of male teenagers by older men as being anything other than homosexual (or bi-sexual) recruitment - taken past the current boundaries of propriety.

  • Contrarius Lebanon, TN
    June 26, 2013 8:28 a.m.

    @1978 --

    "25% of all abuse occurs by people not engaged in a heterosexual lifestyle."

    25% are single. **Single**. "Single" does not mean "homosexual".

    "W.D. Erickson in "Behaviors Patterns of Child Molestors". In his study of 229 convicted child molestors, 86% considered themselves as homosexuals or bisexuals."

    Phhhhht. Erickson used self-reports by the perpetrators as his only measure, which most other sex-offender researchers know better than to do, because -- guess what -- pedophiles would rather LIE than admit that they're pedophiles.

    More credible sources -- including the American Psychological Association, the National Association of Social Workers, the American Academy of Child Psychiatrists and the Child Welfare League of America -- all acknowledge that gay men are NOT more likely to molest children than heterosexual men.

    AN Groth, former director of the Sex Offender Program at the Connecticut Department of Corrections, has said: "my studies have indicated that homosexual males pose LESS risk of sexual harm to children (both male and female)--from both an absolute and a percentage incidence rate--than heterosexual males."

    Freund (1989), Jenny (1994), other studies, and -- of course -- the experts on the subject all contradict Erickson's finding.

    Nice try, though!

  • Rebel ,
    June 26, 2013 10:31 a.m.

    I was molested at the age of 12 but somehow I have let it go and moved on. 25 years later to join the LDS church I had forgiven this man and others who had brought me pain and suffering. I never molested a child but had done things to others that I sought forgiveness for.
    I had hoped recently that the LDS church would withdraw from he BSA but the Prophet has spoken and I am moving on.

  • John Pack Lambert of Michigan Ypsilanti, MI
    June 26, 2013 11:20 a.m.

    Reading the article, I see no evidence for a claim that the Church was aware of these specific cases. The suit seems to boil down to "LDS Church leaders were aware that molestation had occurred in the boy scouts at some point, somewhere, therefore their failure to stop it ever occurring again makes them financially liable."

    This is very different from the alleged set of events in some Catholic cases. Where it was alleged that someone abused, it was reported, and then they were moved. This is not alleged here.

    It is unclear from the article that any of the events involved here were ever reported to leaders.

    They may have been. I don't know. However I am not very convinced. The fact that the boy scouts tracked some abuse by some people does not show they should have known that the specific people involved here were potential abusers. It seems at least at first glance this is a suit alleging people should be held responsible for not making a system with no problems.

    That said, I have to also say that I am unpersuaded by some arguments brought against Catholic leader.

  • Rustymommy Clovis, NM
    June 26, 2013 12:59 p.m.

    I'm sorry for the victims, the BSA and the LDS Church. What a mess! But to some extent, it sounds like a deep pockets grab to me. Why is is that these 4 "victims" are so anxious to blame the LDS church and the BSA, but no mention of the actual names of the perpetrators is given in the article? Were the perpetrators accused, arrested, or otherwise confronted? I don't see any mention of that in the article. Is an organization guilty if they do not know about an abusive act? Would any of these victims like to be held to that same standard with their coworkers or children or spouse? At the point that the "victims" came forward and first reported the incidents, that is the point at which BSA and LDS leaders became responsible to stop further incidents. Before that it was between the perpetrators and the "victims". If BSA or LDS church allowed further interaction after they were informed, then they deserve to take responsibility. But first, the perpetrators need to be brought to justice.

  • DavidJ Branson, MO
    June 27, 2013 1:36 p.m.

    I agree. This is about money and not about justice.

  • tgurd Gonzales, LA
    June 28, 2013 10:08 a.m.

    I agree with the other people who opined if this is to proceed then names of the preportartiors need to brought out as well as evidence and not just what someone says, like one said its sounds more like a money scam than anything else. I say what they say on the car commercials, show me the facts.