The family of a boy who was sexually abused by a troop leader in 2007 is suing the Boy Scouts of America for California personal injury. The plaintiffs claim that the Scouts either knew or should have known that troop leader Al Steven Stein was a danger to the him.
The child's mother contends that not only did the sexual abuse happen, but also when she brought up her concerns with the organization, a local Scouts executive told her not to call the police because they would conduct their own internal probe. She went ahead and contacted the sheriff.
Eventually, Stein was charged with abusing her son and two other boys. He pleaded no contest to felony child endangerment in 2009. Although initially sentenced to probation he was later sent to prison after police found photos of nude kids on his cell phone data card.
The boy, now 17, reportedly remains traumatized by the California sexual assault. His family contends that Stein, who weighed 450 pounds to his approximately 90 pounds at the time, pinned him, pulled down his pants, and fondled his genitals. His mother says that the teenager hardly ever leaves his home still. She also says that he was affected when other Scouts' families accused him of lying about having been sexually abused.
The boy's family is not only seeking unspecified damages, but also their complaint is seeking to compel the Scouts to turn over thousands of confidential documents with details about other sexual abuse allegations made against other Scout leaders in the US. They believe that the organization is littered with "pedophilic wolves." Last month, a Superior Court ordered the Scouts to turn over 20 years worth of records to the plaintiffs' attorneys.
The boy's family is not the first to accuse a Scouts troop leader of sexual abuse. Numerous former Scouts have stepped forward blaming the youth organization for not keeping known pedophiles out and failing to detect sexual abuse and notify police. For example, the plaintiffs in this latest cause said that Stein was known for acting inappropriately toward Scouts' boys. In addition to making inappropriate comments, he allegedly pulled down his pants during certain interactions.
"Organizations responsible for supervising children must make sure that pedophiles and other abusers are not allowed to fill positions that give them access and/or authority to these kids, said Anaheim child sex abuse lawyer Vincent Howard of Howard Law, PC.
Over the last several years, it has become apparent that sexual abuse is an epidemic and often found in churches, schools, and other organizations that have been entrusted by parents with their children's care, supervision, growth, and/or spirituality. While the trauma of what happened to these child sex abuse victims can't be erased, the responsible parties can hopefully be held liable in civil court.
"Even if you were sexually abused as a child and you are now an adult, you still may be able to recover damages," said Anaheim personal injury attorney Vincent Howard. "Don't give up hope unless you've spoken to an experienced Orange County, California child sex abuse law firm about what happened to you, your son, or your daughter.
Although it is unfortunate that so many children around the world have suffered because they were molested, sexually assaulted, or raped by an adult, it is good that this problem is now out in the open. Hopefully this will compel schools, religious organizations, and other groups to be more vigilant about who they hire and take allegations of abuse seriously.
Boy Scouts sued in sexual abuse case, Los Angeles Times, February 19, 2012
Judge orders Boy Scouts to turn over confidential files in Calif. sex abuse case, CBS News, February 20, 2012
More Blog Posts:
Another Miramonte Elementary School Arrested for Alleged Los Angeles Sexual Abuse, California Injury Lawyers, February 6, 2012
Los Angeles Child Abuse: Miramonte Elementary School Teacher Charged with Lewd Acts on 23 Kids, California Injury Lawyers, January 31, 2012
California Supreme Court Considers Whether to Allow Adult Victims of Child Sex Abuse to Sue Third Parties that Knew But Failed to Act, California Injury Lawyers, January 5, 2012
Contact our Orange County, California sex abuse lawyer Vincent Howard today.