Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Hundreds of Boy Scouts sexually abused came forward

Hundreds of former Boy Scouts come forward with new claims of sexual abuse

Cara Kelly
April 24, 2019
"I probably would have gotten kicked out" for coming forward at the time, Kimber said.

Kretschmer said he was abused by a Scout leader who was his psychologist through the Air Force base where his dad was stationed. He was a kid with attention issues, he said, which were less understood at the time.

"Nobody would have listened to me," Kretschmer said. "The problem is, then you think, ‘Is it something I did? What was I doing, was it my fault? If I hadn’t done whatever, he wouldn’t have done that.’ It took me years and years to realize it wasn’t that little child’s fault. It was the adult who had control."

More than 200 individuals have come forward with new allegations of sexual abuse by members of the Boy Scouts of America in recent weeks as a trio of law firms seek to uncover unidentified child abusers.

Advised by Tim Kosnoff, an attorney who has litigated more than a thousand cases of sexual misconduct against organizations such as the Scouts and the Mormon church, the group of attorneys said it has identified 150 alleged pedophiles never before publicly accused.

The law firms began running TV and Google ads encouraging victims to sign on as clients for a potential lawsuit after a report in December that Boy Scouts of America – rebranded as Scouts BSA – prepared for a possible Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing. The volume already gathered could double the number of cases the organization already is facing although a bankruptcy would halt existing and future litigation, the attorneys told USA TODAY.

In a statement about the new allegations, Scouts BSA said, "Any incident of child abuse is one too many, and nothing is more important than the safety and protection of children in our Scouting programs."

Kosnoff and his colleagues said a bankruptcy filing would have a chilling effect on victims' ability to expose predators who are a threat to their communities. The number of victims who have signed on since last month is evidence for the Seattle-based attorney that many more have yet to step forward.
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