Man sues Scouts, alleging ’70s abuse

A Portland man sued the Boy Scouts of America and its local Cascade Pacific Council for more than $3 million Thursday, alleging sexual abuse by two troop leaders in the mid-1970s.

The case brings to at least six the number of people in Portland alleging sexual abuse and suing the Boy Scouts. Together, the suits seek more than $28 million in damages.

The case filed Thursday in Multnomah County Circuit Court alleges that the Boy Scouts allowed two Scoutmasters, identified as Steven Terry Hill and Thomas Hensley, to stay in contact with boys after they knew of sexual abuse.

“We also intend to prove that the Boy Scouts were well aware, by at least the 1960s, that they had a serious, institution-wide infestation of child abuse, stretching across the country, involving hundreds of predators and thousands of children,” said a statement from Portland attorney Kelly Clark, who is spearheading the sexual abuse suits.

Hill, 58, is one of about 50 Oregon leaders expelled by the Boy Scouts for sexual abuse between 1970 and 1990 and more than 5,100 leaders expelled nationally since 1946, according to confidential Boy Scouts files and summaries obtained by The Oregonian.

Hill registered as Scoutmaster of Troop No. 76 in 1975 and molested three boys in the troop, according to the internal Scouts records. He was convicted of child sexual abuse in the 1990s.

Hensley does not appear to have a criminal record and does not appear in the Scouts’ internal records. The Oregonian could not reach Hensley for comment; court documents do not provide his age, middle name or place of residence, or say whether he is still alive.

Officials with the Cascade Pacific Council of the Boy Scouts of America declined to comment, noting that they had not been served by the court.

Clark said his client, an unidentified man now in his mid-40s, met Hill and Hensley at Gregory Heights Middle School in Northeast Portland at a recruiting meeting for “high adventure” Scouting with Troop 76. The lawsuit alleges that the Scoutmasters fondled and sexually abused the boy at least twice a week for two years starting in 1976.

Hill resigned in 1978, according to Scouts records.

In 1991, Hill was convicted of four counts of sodomy, five counts of delivering controlled substances to a minor and three counts of furnishing alcohol to a minor. He remains in prison.

The prosecutor in the case said Hill had an “almost amazing ability to manipulate teenage boys,” using his work as a photographer, his purported training as a juvenile lawyer and his role as president of “The High Adventure Club.”

Published in: on February 3, 2008 at 7:02 am  Leave a Comment  

Boy Scout Leader tied to global child porn ring

A volunteer Big Brother who works for a school board in Peel Region is one of nine people charged in connection with a global child pornography ring.

The man, a former Boy Scout leader, will be identified today when representatives from several police forces hold a joint press conference to talk about alleged Canadian involvement in a worldwide operation.

Those arrested are alleged to have purchased child porn videos, sometimes tailor-made for Internet customers. They were identified during an international investigation known as “Operation Koala.”

The Canadian arrests are only now being made public. However, charges laid against more than 92 people in Europe were disclosed in November following the arrest of the videographer who was alleged to be at the centre of the network.


Police identified the man as Marzola Sergio, 42, an Italian citizen who they say produced the abusive material mainly in Ukraine. Some material, however, was filmed in Belgium and the Netherlands.

The video producer allegedly visited homes where parents allowed their children to be filmed being raped, sometimes with the parents’ involvement, or where children were forced to pose with other children or alone, said a Canadian police source.

Internet customers could arrange for the child victims to say the customer’s name during the abuse, pose in a certain way, even wear lingerie purchased by the customer to be worn during filming, said Europol, the European Union’s police unit based in the Hague.

At today’s news conference, officers from several agencies including Peel Regional Police, the Ontario Provincial Police, the RCMP, Europol and the military’s Canadian Forces National Investigation Services will outline the charges.

Cub Scout leader Russell Back Changes his plea


A Deer Park man who pleaded guilty to sex crimes involving children last year has withdrawn his plea.Russell Back changed his plea to not guilty in court on Friday.Back was originally charged with six counts of kidnapping, three counts of child endangerment, two counts of gross sexual imposition, one count of importuning and three counts of distributing harmful material to minors.

Back was arrested after an investigation in July when parents questioned their children about what they were doing in his home.In October, Back pleaded guilty to lesser charges that would have likely put him in prison for nine years instead of the possible 36 years if convicted on all charges.Back was scheduled to be sentenced Friday.His trial is now scheduled for March 17.

Back was a Cub Scout leader, but police said no Scouts appeared to have been involved.

Published in: on January 10, 2008 at 6:44 pm  Leave a Comment  

Cub Scout leader Russell Back Changes his plea


A Deer Park man who pleaded guilty to sex crimes involving children last year has withdrawn his plea.Russell Back changed his plea to not guilty in court on Friday.Back was originally charged with six counts of kidnapping, three counts of child endangerment, two counts of gross sexual imposition, one count of importuning and three counts of distributing harmful material to minors.

Back was arrested after an investigation in July when parents questioned their children about what they were doing in his home.In October, Back pleaded guilty to lesser charges that would have likely put him in prison for nine years instead of the possible 36 years if convicted on all charges.Back was scheduled to be sentenced Friday.His trial is now scheduled for March 17.

Back was a Cub Scout leader, but police said no Scouts appeared to have been involved.

Published in: on January 10, 2008 at 6:44 pm  Leave a Comment  

Mark Andrew Lutz – Cub Scout Leader – Child Pornography

More than 260 people in 44 states have been arrested nationwide as the result of the operation, the prosecutors said. More than two-dozen defendants arrested through the investigation have been identified as being involved in the molestation of children and approximately 12 others have been previously convicted of sex offenses against minors.

A Cub Scout den leader has been charged with possession of child pornography, U.S. Attorney Christopher J. Christie announced Friday. Mark Andrew Lutz, 46, of 7 Franklin Ave. in Pequannock Township, has been charged in the one count federal criminal complaint with knowingly possessing at least three images of child pornography, prosecutors said.

Agents with the United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement executed a search warrant at his home on Nov. 20, according to the criminal complaint against Lutz. A desktop computer was seized.

Among the files on the computers hard drive were numerous images of what appear to be child pornography, the complaint said. Two of the photos involved prepubescent females and one involved a prepubescent male, according to the document.

Following an appearance Thursday before U.S. Magistrate Judge Patty Shwartz, Lutz was released on $100,000 bond, prosecutors said. He was prohibited, as a condition of bail, from contact with minors unless the child?s parent or guardian was present and have been made aware of the charges against him, Christie said in a statement.


Lutz, who has served as a den leader for Cub Scout Pack 144 in Pompton Plains, indicated he would be resigning from his position through his attorney at his initial court appearance.

The complaint is the result of an international investigation known as Operation Emissary, which was initiated by the New Jersey office of Immigration and Customs Enforcement in late 2005 in conjunction with the U.S. Attorney?s Office for the District of New Jersey, the prosecutors office said.

The investigation focused on a commercial Internet Web site that offered access to videos and images of hard-core child pornography, prosecutors said. It alerted would-be subscribers that subscribing to the site was illegal, and warned them to be discreet about their purchase, according to prosecutors.

More than 260 people in 44 states have been arrested nationwide as the result of the operation, the prosecutors said. More than two-dozen defendants arrested through the investigation have been identified as being involved in the molestation of children and approximately 12 others have been previously convicted of sex offenses against minors.

The charge of possessing at least three images of child pornography carries a maximum statutory penalty of 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

Published in: on December 29, 2007 at 5:37 pm  Leave a Comment  

Harvey Allen Zeek Ex-Scout leader pleads to child porn charge

A former Montague Cub Scout leader has pleaded no contest as charged to six child pornography counts — three of distributing child sexually abusive material, three of possessing it.

Harvey Allen Zeek, 37, of 315 S. Mears, Whitehall, entered the pleas Friday before Muskegon County 14th Circuit Judge William C. Marietti. Marietti scheduled sentencing for 1:30 p.m. Jan. 22. Zeek is lodged in the Muskegon County Jail.

Marietti committed to cap Zeek’s minimum prison sentence at 18 months. By law, the maximum sentence on the distributing counts is set at seven years, while the maximum for the possession counts is four years.

A no-contest plea is not an admission of guilt, but judges treat it as a guilty plea at sentencing.
Zeek, who has no criminal record, was arrested after sending an undercover officer in Florida pornographic pictures of girls approximately 7 or 8 years old, Muskegon County Prosecutor Tony Tague said earlier.

Zeek said he got his pictures from Web sites and from someone who sent them to him, the prosecutor said.

On Nov. 8, local police officers working with the Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force seized a computer at Zeek’s home that had several pornographic images of underage girls, Tague said.

According to a copy of the affidavit and search warrant, Zeek admitted that he used a computer to download and send child sexually abusive materials, “including visual images of children engaging in sexual acts.”

Published in: on December 18, 2007 at 1:12 pm  Leave a Comment  

Family Files Suit Against Alleged Child Predator Connected to Boy Scouts


A Rockford-area family files a lawsuit against the Boy Scouts and an alleged sexual predator.

Charles Bickerstaff, 56, is charged in Lee County with molesting two boys. He’s a former Boy Scouts of America executive and prosecutors say he met the boys through Boy Scouts.

Tuesday the family of one victim will announce a lawsuit against Bickerstaff and the Boy Scouts. The suit seeks more than $50,000 in damages.

Bickerstaff has pleaded not guilty in the cases.

Published in: on November 20, 2007 at 12:25 pm  Leave a Comment  

Family Files Suit Against Alleged Child Predator Connected to Boy Scouts


A Rockford-area family files a lawsuit against the Boy Scouts and an alleged sexual predator.

Charles Bickerstaff, 56, is charged in Lee County with molesting two boys. He’s a former Boy Scouts of America executive and prosecutors say he met the boys through Boy Scouts.

Tuesday the family of one victim will announce a lawsuit against Bickerstaff and the Boy Scouts. The suit seeks more than $50,000 in damages.

Bickerstaff has pleaded not guilty in the cases.

Published in: on November 20, 2007 at 12:25 pm  Leave a Comment  

Warren Robert Oleson – Repeat Sex Offender

A 12-year-old girl told authorities a man raped her in his truck outside a Cub Scout meeting last month. Warren Robert Oleson, 23, a registered sex offender in Rogers, was arrested Thursday on charges of rape and failing to register as a sex offender after authorities found he hadn’t kept his address current.

“25% of all sex offenders re-offend within 15 years”
………Sarah Tofte
Published in: on November 18, 2007 at 4:45 pm  Leave a Comment  
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