Boy Scout's ‘perversion files’ include Hawaii cases

Published: Oct. 18, 2012 at 10:26 PM HST
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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Six documents relate to six men who worked with Boy Scout troops in Hawaii in the 1960s, 70s and 80s.

They are among some 1,200 scout leaders nationwide who were banned by Boy Scouts of America after it learned they had been suspected of sexual crimes against kids.

"The boy scouts knew they had an institution-wide problem with child abuse and didn't take steps to deal with that," child abuse attorney Kelly Clark said.

On Thursday, Clark and other lawyers in Portland, Oregon, released the files the Boy Scouts collected between 1965 and 1985.

The Hawaii cases involved scoutmasters and volunteers. One man was an assistant district executive.

Boy Scouts of America president Wayne Perry said in the past the organization made mistakes.

"We have to remember, that was a different time," he said. "I'm not going to defend what happened then. To the extent we fell short of protecting youth, we are profoundly sorry."

Hawaii's assistant commissioner for catholic scouting said the organization now conducts thorough background checks.

"I've also talked to other leaders. They have said for the past 20 years that they've been leaders, we've had a very strict and stringent set of rules and regulations and trainings that have been provided to our kids and to our families and leaders, to ensure that these types of things don't happen."

The files contain internal communications and hand-written notes between boy scout executives, minus names of scouts and others who reported suspected abuse.

"You do not get to keep secrets about hidden dangers to children. Period. End of conversation," Clark said.

The Boy Scouts kept the files for background checks to prevent suspected abusers from re-entering the organization.

Lawyers want Congress to audit the group's current child abuse policy.

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