The California Supreme Court has rejected the Boy Scouts’ attempt to keep their internal records concerning the sexual abuse of minors secret. The ruling is another setback in the Boy Scouts’ repeated attempts to keep secrets and their own dealings with sexual abuse. In spite of the court ruling, the actual documents will most likely not be made public until later this fall since they are under a protective order from a previous court ruling.
According to an article in the Washington Post, “The Boy Scouts kept internal files on alleged sexual abuse for nearly a century. Through other court cases, the Scouts were forced to reveal files dating from 1960 to 1991. They detailed numerous cases where abuse claims were made and Boy Scout officials never alerted authorities and sometimes actively sought to protect the accused.”
The California high court ruling follows the Oregon Supreme Court ruling last October concerning the Boy Scouts’ abuse documents surrounding our Kelly Lewis trial in 2010. Our firm was successful in providing these abuse documents to the general public for the first time ever.
Such court decisions are a step in the right direction toward transparency and justice which are central to the future protection of children and accountability for those who’ve protected child abusers in the past. I’m very pleased that the California Supreme Court ruled to continue the movement toward transparency and accountability.