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Posts published in “Day: May 23, 2010”

Scouting the scouts

Put this in the category of a story unfolding very slowly, but with clear acceleration: The Boy Scouts and the child abuse in their midst.

The lid was on for many years; even more than (for a long time) the Catholic Church, little public notice got out about the organization's cases of sexual abuse. But that is changing. A couple of recent trial have unearthed document evidence that could soon blast this story much wider.

Check out the Oregonian article today (the first of two), with its story looking behind the recent Portland Scouts trial. What the paper is running now, following up on the door cracked open during the trial, is new.

The key source, the paper said: "The confidential Boy Scout files used in reporting this story were first seen outside the Scouts' inner circle in 1991, when California attorney Michael Rothschild won access to them as part of a civil suit. Seattle attorney Timothy Kosnoff later obtained the records and scanned them to create a database, which he shared with The Oregonian."

But that may not be all: "A similar set of files, from 1965 to 1985, was entered into evidence in the recent Multnomah County civil case brought by a sex-abuse victim of former Scout leader Timur Dykes. Those files have been sealed, but The Oregonian, The Associated Press and The New York Times, among others, have filed a motion to make them public."

Since the precedent for release has been set, there's a good chance some or all of these records will be unearthed. A big Portland earthquake could be coming, in the months ahead.