An attorney involved in a civil lawsuit against the Boy Scouts of America over the sexual abuse of a 13-year-old boy by an adult volunteer says documents kept by the organization for nearly a century known as the "perversion files" reveal a "sordid history of child sexual abuse."
The attorney, Tim Hale, made the statement in California Monday at a civil trial on behalf of the victim who is now 20, according to the Associated Press. The victim, who was not identified by the AP, but listed in court documents, is suing the Boy Scout of America as well as a local scouting council for punitive damages for the 2007 abuse. He alleges the Boys Scouts were negligent because they failed to warn and train parents and volunteers about sex abuse.
Hale is being allowed by the court to access 30 years of "perversion" files which include 16 years of documents from 1991 to 2007 that have never been seen before. more >>
Georgia put Warren Lee Hill to death on Tuesday despite numerous protests from those stating he was not mentally capable of understanding what was happening to him.
Hill's attorneys pleaded with the Supreme Court to stay the execution until his IQ could be retested; they claimed his IQ was 70, while prosecutors stated Hill's IQ was 90. In most cases, states cannot execute prisoners with an IQ of "approximately 70" or below. Hill had not been tested since 2000, where doctors testified he was not intellectually disabled. However, those same doctors later testified that they had "been rushed" and that since then they had concluded he was intellectually disabled.
"Today, the Court has unconscionably allowed a grotesque miscarriage of justice to occur in Georgia," Brian Kammer, a laywer for Hill said in a statement to WSBTV. "Georgia has been allowed to execute an unquestionably intellectually disabled man, Warren Hill, in direct contravention of the Court's clear precedent prohibiting such cruelty." more >>
A family of five in Utah found dead in their home are alleged victims of suicide and murder, and authorities believe the parents took their own lives and those of their children due to a fear of the biblical apocalypse.
Benjamin and Kristi Strack, as well as their children—Benson, 14, Emery, 12, and Zion, 11—all died of a lethal combination of diphenhydramine and methadone, authorities stated. While the coroner ruled Kristi and Benjamin's deaths suicides and those of Emery and Zion homicides, a formal cause of death was left "undetermined."
"There are some questions we can't answer and may never be able to answer," Springville Police Chief J. Scott Finlayson said on Tuesday. "There is no evidence any of the family members were forced to take lethal doses of any drug combinations, nor was there any evidence they took the drugs willingly." more >>
While Mexico's attorney general said that he has proof that the 43 students who were taken by a cartel in September have been killed, parents said that they will not be giving up hope that their children are alive until there is hard evidence to the contrary.
Jesus Murillo Karam, the attorney general, said that his team has interviewed 99 different people, including members of the criminal gang who are believed to have killed the students, and said that he can confirm the murders, BBC News reported.
"The evidence allows us to determine that the students were kidnapped, killed, burned and thrown in the river," Karam said. more >>
Lacey Spears, the young mother accused of secretly poisoning her late 5-year-old son and documenting his decline on social media, went on trial in Westchester County, New York this week.
Last year the 27-year-old single Mom was arrested and charged with second-degree depraved murder and first-degree manslaughter following the suspicious death of her son Garnett-Paul Spears in January. Prosecutors say the young boy was admitted to hospital with extremely high levels of sodium just days before he died and Spears is accused of adding salt to a feeding tube in his stomach which reportedly caused swelling in his brain before ultimately killing him.
"This mother was intentionally feeding her son salt in toxic levels," Westchester County assistant district attorney, Doreen Lloyd said previously. more >>
A 70-year-old pastor who celebrated his 53rd wedding anniversary this month left behind a trail of grief and confusion Monday, when after years of speculation he was found guilty by a jury of sexually molesting two of his grandchildren.
According to WKBW, pastor Roy Harriger of Community Fellowship Church in the town of Hartland, New York, was finally convicted of two of three counts of coercive criminal sexual conduct against a child by a jury Monday in a case that could have ended in a mistrial.
Harriger had originally faced three counts of incest but those charges were dropped. He was found guilty of molesting two of his grandchildren 12 years ago when he was pastor of Wesleyan Church in Lyndonville. At least 15 people in three states came forward and signed affidavits claiming Harriger molested them as children when he was arrested by authorities last year. Unfortunately, many of those cases are past the statute of limitations so he could not be held accountable for them. more >>