CA--Group wants Sac area official disciplined
Group wants Sac area official disciplined
In legal filing, he attacks & blames childhood sex abuse victim
Crimes by adult on 13 year old were “consensual,” say Scout staffers
Abuse group: “It’s a deplorable, chilling & maybe illegal defense strategy”
“Any sexual contact between adult and child is a always criminal,” victims say
SNAP: “An organization that supposedly values loyalty throws a teen under the bus”
Support group fears Scout’s legal move “discourages other abuse victims from speaking up”
Holding signs and childhood photos at a sidewalk news conference, sex abuse victims and their supporters will
--Expose what they call “reprehensible tactics” being used by Boy Scouts officials in a pending child sexual abuse and cover up lawsuit in Sacramento,
-- Blast the Scouts for taking action that has a “chilling effect” on other crime victims inside and outside the organization,
--Urge Scout officials to discipline or demote the staffer responsible for the legal maneuvers, and
--Prod others who may have seen, suspected or suffered crimes in Scouting to “protect kids expose wrongdoers, deter cover ups by getting help from independent sources like therapists, police, prosecutors, attorneys and support groups”
Thursday, December 15, at 1:00 p.m.
On the sidewalk outside of the Sacramento County Courthouse, 720 9th Street (between G and H streets) in Sacramento
Two or more sex abuse victims and their supporters who are members of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAPnetwork.org)
Last year, a 17 year old sued Boy Scout officials for the repeated abuse he says he suffered six years earlier by an assistant scoutmaster. Now, in what SNAP leaders call “a disgusting and chilling legal maneuver,” those officials are essentially blaming the then-13 year old for his sexual victimization by a now-imprisoned predator.
SNAP wants the head of the northern regional California Golden Empire Council of the Scouts to be “disciplined or demoted” by top Scout brass for the move, which is included in defense “motion to dismiss” to be heard on Dec. 20.
Dustin Lee Hedrick sexually assaulted “John Doe” in 2010 and 2012, according to Doe’s lawsuit which was filed in Sacramento Superior Court last year. Hedrick reportedly used “the power, authority and trust of his positions” to entice (the boy) into criminal childhood sexual abuse, the lawsuit alleges.
In 2013, Hedrick pleaded no contest to a charge of committing a lewd act upon a 13-year-old child. He was sentenced to six years in state prison. http://www.sacbee.com/news/local/article19181649.htmlBesdies being “immoral,” SNAP says that the Scouts’ legal filing violates a recent California law that forbids defendants in child sex cases from claiming consent by the alleged victim. (Civil Code Section 1708.5.5.)
SNAP leaders believe there are others “with information or suspicions” about Hedrick. It’s urging them to “find the courage and strength this teenager has summoned, and speak up now so that others are spared years of horrific pain.”
At Hedricks’ 2014 sentencing, the judge said the victim was “especially vulnerable,” but Hedrick “misused a position of trust” kept abusing the boy until he was arrested.” Hedrick then tried “to deflect responsibly” for his crimes even though he knew his actions were “wrong,” Judge John J. Garaventa wrote.
SNAP says Scout officials are using several “hair-splitting legalisms” in defending themselves, including claiming that they never “supervised leaders or adult volunteers” in Doe’s troop. They’re also seeking to have Doe’s case tossed out entirely through a “motion for summary judgment.”
The group is also praising Doe, saying “it’s very rare that someone so young shows such wisdom and courage to quickly report, expose and prosecute those who commit and sue those who conceal these devastating crimes.”
Joseph George Jr (916 641 7300, email@example.com), Joseph C. George PhD of Sacramento (916 802 7949) and Timothy Hale of Santa Barbara (805 963 2345) represent the alleged victim. The Scouts are represented by John Gherini of San Francisco (415 781 7900) and Paul Ryan Ortuno of Irvine (949 852 8200), both of the Sedgwick firm.