Settlement Possible in Scout Case

Attorneys Will Meet in Mediation Session March 21

Attorneys for the Boy Scouts of America (BSA), ordered to produce voluminous national files that include molestation cases since 1991, will meet in a mediation session March 21 with lawyers for a local youth molested in 2007.

The mediation could produce a settlement that would include opening files to the public, with victims’ names redacted, so that parents could determine whether someone with whom their child is in contact is mentioned.

Scouting has long fought to keep its files private, but last month Santa Barbara Superior Court Judge Donna Geck ordered BSA to produce the so-called “Ineligible Volunteer” files. They name persons not allowed to participate in Scouting for various reasons, including molestation.

Tim Hale, attorney for the Santa Barbara boy suing the Scouts, has already received 1971-91 files. An adult volunteer pleaded no contest to the charge and served a prison term. The suit contends that BSA was negligent in not responding to clear red flags on the part of the adult volunteer’s previous behavior, not warning the public that abuse of young Scouts was prevalent, and was keeping the files secret.

The mother of the boy says that the top BSA official here discouraged her from notifying law enforcement of the incident. She did anyway.

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