The documents, released by a firm that represents sex abuse victims, reveal there may have been as many as 7,800 Boy Scout troop leaders and volunteers who allegedly sexually abused more than 12,000 victims.
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That's four times what the organization revealed more than a decade ago.
Woah. Boy Scouts of America has reportedly removed thousands of leaders accused of child sex abusers over the years & never reported them.— Haley Britzky (@halbritz) April 23, 2019
"[T]he number of alleged perpetrators ... totals 7,819, while the number of victims total 12,254." https://t.co/CW2wr4zrdZ
In Georgia, the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) sex abuse cases have taken center stage on debates over how the state should handle childhood sex abuse claims.
Now, local attorneys want to get their hands on details that will help support their cases.
Atlanta-based attorneys Natalie Woodward and Darren Penn represent nearly two dozen Boy Scout sex abuse cases in Georgia since 2012.
"We're talking about decades and decades and decades and decades of conduct that was literally concealed," Penn said.
Woodward and Penn learned this week that there are reportedly more than 100 documented cases of abuse in Georgia, and thousands of pedophile Boy Scout leaders nationwide have been reported from the early 1940s to 2016. That's four times the number previously reported by the organization.
"Every one of those perpetrators, they represent, most often, more than one child," Woodward said. "That's the part I think that will shake anybody to their core to hear that. And then to think it took until 2019 to get into the open."
The new allegations came this week from a New York law firm that revealed names tied to cases in the Northern District of New York The testimony came from an auditor who was hired by the BSA during an unrelated child rape case.
"This is information coming from a Boy Scouts representative. This isn't even information that a third party or an independent group has been able to look over these files," Woodward said. "We're still hearing about it from them and we're yet to see the documents ourselves."
Penn said that, although he's glad the allegations are coming out now, it's way too late.
Over 12,000 Boy Scouts were victims of sexual abuse, says expert https://t.co/nOFXVMcOXZ— The Daily Beast (@thedailybeast) April 24, 2019
HAPPENING NOW: Attorney's representing victims of alleged abuse at the hands of Boy Scouts of America scout leaders identifying the names of hundreds of alleged child molesters found in so called "perversion files" @6abc pic.twitter.com/rqQUN7H9G2— George Solis (@GeorgeSolis) April 23, 2019
"I think what they owe and what they ought to be stepping up to the plate right now is: What do we do for all of the victims that have been created over all these years?" Penn said.
Carr learned that the Boy Scouts of America is moving to dismiss the Georgia cases in the Cobb County and Athens. The organization released a statement in response to the allegations saying:
"We care deeply about all victims of child abuse and sincerely apologize to anyone who was harmed during their time in Scouting. We believe victims, we support them, and we have paid for unlimited counseling by a provider of their choice. Nothing is more important than the safety and protection of children in Scouting and we are outraged that there have been times when individuals took advantage of our programs to abuse innocent children.
A law firm in Manhattan is set to release the names of more than 100 Boy Scouts leaders in NY who have been accused of sexually abusing minors. pic.twitter.com/ydQ3KWo5oP— Spectrum News NY1 (@NY1) April 23, 2019
"Throughout our history, we have enacted strong youth protection policies to prevent future abuse, including mandatory youth protection trainings and a formal leader-selection process that includes criminal background checks. Since the 1920s, we have maintained a Volunteer Screening Database to prevent individuals accused of abuse or inappropriate conduct from joining or re-entering our programs, a practice recommended in 2007 by the Centers for Disease Control for all youth-serving organizations.
BREAKING NEWS: Sexual abuse scandal rocks the Boy Scouts of America as it is revealed 'more than 12,000 members were victims of perpetrators who will soon be revealed in "perversion files"'. Files maintained also list more than 7,800 alleged perpetrators of sexual abuse.— Dave Vescio (@DaveVescio) April 24, 2019
"At no time have we ever knowingly allowed a perpetrator to work with youth, and we mandate that all leaders, volunteers and staff members nationwide immediately report any abuse allegation to law enforcement."
"Scouting programs today are safe," said Erin Eisner, a chief strategy officer for the BSA and the mother of two Scouts. "If I felt for a second that scouting was unsafe, I would not be associated with nor advocate for the BSA."
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
© 2019 Cox Media Group.