Oct 22, 2011 at 12:07 pm #1280971
VICTORIA —A Scout leader, later convicted of numerous sexual assaults against children, was shuffled from a Scout group in central Victoria to a Sea Scout group in Cordova Bay, — about 10 kilometres across town —after regional Scout Canada leaders decided suspicions of abuse were not hard enough evidence to go to police.
Richard (Rick) Turley, 58, who was involved with Scouts in California and in Victoria through the 1970s and ‘80s and who spent years preying on victims in Victoria and other Vancouver Island communities, is a focal point of a widespread investigation by the CBC’s The Fifth Estate and Los Angeles Times.
The investigation into Scouts in both Canada and the United State claims the organizations kept confidential lists of pedophiles.
In the 1980s, when Turley started volunteering with the 2nd Douglas Scout Group in Victoria, which met at Craigflower elementary school and included boys from the Gorge, View Royal, Burnside and Tillicum areas, had already had been convicted in the U.S. of kidnapping a boy he met through Scouts and served time in a state hospital as a “mentally disordered sex offender.”
Jean Buydens, 2nd Douglas group committee chairwoman during the 1980s, said in an interview that she was uncomfortable with Turley from the moment he arrived, but parents loved him.
“The mothers thought he was a wonderful leader. He would take the boys away camping at the weekends and he would have them over to his house. They thought he was a wonderfully involved Scout leader,” she said.
Sometime around 1985, Buydens told regional commissioner Craig Vanni and the professional scouter about suspicions that Turley was abusing the boys.
One boy had gone to Turley’s house to cut the grass “and when his mother picked him up he was white and shaking and said ‘I am never going there again,’” Buydens said.
There were frequent, and sometimes unauthorized, camping trips and a Beaver leader, who unexpectedly dropped by Turley’s house, saw boys with beer bottles, she said.
Turley also brought boys into the Scout group from outside the area, including under-age boys, Buydens said.
“All these things accumulated in my head and I had a funny feeling about it, so I went to Scout House and told them. I thought they would handle it,” she said.
It was decided Turley should be removed from 2nd Douglas, but he was allowed to volunteer with Cordova Sea Scouts under the supervision of another leader, who had been warned he was never to be alone with the boys, Buydens said.
Police were not told because there was not enough proof, she said.
“I was shocked they would give him another chance, but they explained they had no grounds to stop it. It was just hearsay,” Buydens said.
Vanni could not be contacted Friday.
Turley was sentenced to seven years in 1996 for convictions on five separate counts of sexual assaults on four young boys, including a case where he committed buggery on one child between 1971 and 1973, court documents show.
The courts later deemed him a dangerous offender, but he successfully appealed that decision and was designated a long-term offender, instead.
The Boy Scout leader committed most of the assaults in the Greater Victoria area, but some incidents took place in various communities on Vancouver Island. One boy was assaulted in Victoria, the Gulf Islands, Nanaimo, Esquimalt and Saanich between 1983 and 1992. Another boy was assaulted on Saltspring Island for several years starting in 1983.
But the Boy Scouts were only a small part of his pattern of abuse, according to Ruth Picha, the Crown prosecutor working the case. Turley was involved in several community organizations, including Little League baseball, and more than once assaulted children of the mothers he was dating, she explained. He was willing to do anything to get him near children.
“We don’t go through dangerous offender hearings on every individual convicted of sexual assaults,” Picha said. “We do it in cases where the risk to reoffend is high.”Oct 22, 2011 at 12:16 pm #1793792
As a father I will contend that I would take the law into my own hands in this case.Oct 22, 2011 at 2:46 pm #1793826
and you'd be in jail and none the wiser. What is buggery?Oct 22, 2011 at 2:50 pm #1793828
@ouzelLocale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
"and you'd be in jail and none the wiser."
Only if he fails to honor the 11th Commandment.
"What is buggery?"
That is a question best asked of Google. This is a family oriented website. ;)Oct 22, 2011 at 3:40 pm #1793839
Not that anyone should condone pedophiles… but there are two facets of human ugliness here:
1. the abuse of our most vulnerable by adults who should be leadership figures instead
2. the sheer intolerance exhibited by others who would deny another human being a second chance.
Yes, I too believe firmly that offenders should be punished — and treated — but those who have done their time should be given a second chance and not be hounded out neighborhood by neighborhood (not talking about this case, but talking about sex offenders in general). I see nothing wrong with giving anyone a second chance — with safeguards away from children as appropriate.
Yes, I can appreciate that some repeat offenders can't seem ever to be cured. But I also believe that people in the future will view our treatment of sex offenders with horror — much like how we view the way lepers were mistreated in ages past.
How can any Christian — or believer of any religion that teaches compassion — oh heck, even secular humanist — subscribe to any sort of "zero tolerance" policy toward fellow human beings? Sexual abuse is horrid. But to me, the ego of those so ready to write off others is ugly as hell too.Oct 22, 2011 at 3:42 pm #1793842
Ben, please see my previous post.Oct 22, 2011 at 3:45 pm #1793843
Yes, David, I saw your post. It's why the world is as ugly as it is.Oct 22, 2011 at 4:05 pm #1793848
No. I think the world is ugly when people who have no idea what they are talking about choose to comment.
Do you have kids? Have you had pedophilia affect your family in any way? Are you aware of the rehabilitation rates of convicted pedophiles?Oct 22, 2011 at 4:55 pm #1793861
I have kids and feel your pain. Is it right to take the law in your own hands? No. If I were on the jury, would I convict you? I don't think I could. I'm frankly surprised that the guy wasn't used for crab bait long ago.
But the point of the story is that several major youth organizations and an entire justice system dropped the ball. This really isn't news, but it continues to flabbergast and appall me. The sheer numbers of these cases are horrific. Giving a sex offender a second chance at freedom is a very different thing than giving them a second chance to work with kids. I don't think there is a "cure," and I don't have any answers from there other than to keep them away from kids, period.Oct 22, 2011 at 5:25 pm #1793871
"Giving a sex offender a second chance at freedom is a very different thing than giving them a second chance to work with kids."
That covers both compassion and common sense precaution!
Good thing that millions of parents (and others) in Canada repudiated the death penalty. As for just grabbing a gun and "handling the situation" — that evoke the wild sections of Afghanistan — and not any kind of civilized place worthy of the name.Oct 22, 2011 at 5:35 pm #1793872
@mtnratLocale: Southern Cdn Rockies
Ben Ben Ben. These people cannot be rehabilitated. That is a great fallacy perpetuated by psychiatrists. Even then many psychiatrists will tell you that pedophiles cannot be rehabilitated. The only cure is the noose or electric chair.
Cheers.Oct 22, 2011 at 5:37 pm #1793873
@davidadairLocale: West Dakota
Again, please see previous post.Oct 22, 2011 at 5:57 pm #1793878
"The only cure is the noose or electric chair."
With all the mine fields that need to be cleared? Let them do their share.Oct 22, 2011 at 5:59 pm #1793879
@simauliusLocale: Bohemian Alps
It also appears that no one really stepped forward to say "this is wrong and has to stop".Oct 22, 2011 at 6:01 pm #1793881
Noose, electric chair, let them clear minefields…
Pedophiles are ugly, but they sure ain't the only ugly ones here.Oct 22, 2011 at 6:29 pm #1793891
Daryl and DarylParticipant
@lyrad1Locale: Pacific Northwest, USA, Earth
Well I hope Scouts at least made sure he wasn't an agnostic or an atheist.Oct 22, 2011 at 7:25 pm #1793902
"Noose, electric chair, let them clear minefields…
Pedophiles are ugly, but they sure ain't the only ugly ones here."
Why Benjamin Tang, I am surprised in you. Would not clearing minefields be the most compassionate work imaginable? And fine atonement for egregious sins too.
It is an ugly subject to start with. You're hearing the rage, Ben. When you have kids, some little switch goes off in your brain stem that makes you just a little crazy if someone messes them. Mess with my lovelies and I'll go from a Screaming Liberal to somewhere on the right of Divine Right Monarchy in about 3 milliseconds.Oct 22, 2011 at 8:21 pm #1793917
this headline is of the convicted offender in 1975 … he was with the scouts till at least the mid 80s …
Scouts failed to stop sexual predator: CBC investigation
Pedophile moved from troop to troop in B.C., California.
Boy Scouts of America leaders knew for years about incidents involving a Canadian pedophile who preyed on boys in the U.S. but failed to stop him as he moved back to Canada, where he continued his abuse.
The organization sometimes even helped him go undetected by authorities, an investigation by CBC-TV's The Fifth Estate and the Los Angeles Times has found.
Scouts Canada learned of his inappropriate behaviour in the 1980s and kicked him out, but nearly a decade passed before police charged him with crimes.
TIMELINEThe Scouts and the Turley sex abuse case
Throughout the 1970s and '80s, Richard Turley was involved with the Scouts across California and British Columbia, molesting at least eight scouts.
Richard Turley poses with his Scouting uniform on in an old picture taken in the 1980s.
"It was easy," the 58-year-old, who now lives in Alberta, says about how he used scouting to target his victims. "Kids were easily accessible."
The CBC investigation catalogued nearly 80 cases in Canada, dating from the 1950s, where either active or former scout leaders committed crimes ranging from sexual assault to possession of child p0rnography. More than 300 children were abused by leaders while they were active in the movement.
In 1975, Turley did what he describes as the “craziest, stupid, bizarre thing” he would ever do. California newspaper headlines from 1975 dubbed it a “wild abduction tale.”
In a stolen single-engine Cessna, Turley kidnapped Ed Iris, an 11-year-old Nova Scotia boy living in La Puente, Calif., whom Turley had met while visiting a local scout troop.
Watch the full documentary on The Fifth Estate this Friday at 9 p.m. (9:30 p.m. in Newfoundland and Labrador.)
A day earlier, he'd shown up at Iris’s house, telling Ed’s mother he was “one of Canada’s top scouts leaders” and asking if he could show the boy around town.
“He had badges all over the place,” says Iris, now 47 and living in Ontario. “He had his Canadian scouting book. It was impressive to a kid.”
Turley took the boy on a fun-filled day in the San Diego area. That night, the two slept in a car inside Turley’s double sleeping bag covered in scouts merit patches, said Iris. Turley later admitted to molesting the boy, though Iris says he slept through it.
A newspaper report on Richard Turley's kidnapping of Ed Iris.
In the morning, Turley stole a Cessna at a regional airport, vowing to take Ed back to Canada. With the plane low on fuel, though, Turley was soon forced to land.
Turley, then 21, was arrested and later pleaded guilty to child stealing. At trial, a judge committed him to a state hospital as a “mentally disordered sex offender.”
Police files obtained by The Fifth Estate and the Los Angeles Times show that Boy Scouts of America knew about the incident because they helped officers search for Iris and Turley.
Though the Boy Scouts of America have a decades-old practice of creating “confidential files” recording individuals barred from the group for sex abuse allegations — a system aimed at preventing pedophiles from hopping from troop to troop — it appears no file was created on Turley at that time.
Put on list
In November 1976, 18 months after Turley’s arrival at the Patton State Hospital, he was deemed well enough to be released. The judge ordered him to return to Canada and report for probation if he re-entered the U.S.
Within a year, Turley returned to Southern California to work at a Boy Scout camp near San Diego, an hour's drive from the hospital. He spent the next three summers working for the camp.
'Hopefully, he went back to Canada and that was their problem.'
—Former Scout executive Buford Hill
On the last day of camp in July 1979, Turley arranged to stay an extra night with three boys from the Orange County troop. All three were molested that night, according to a confidential file later created by the Boy Scouts of America.
The next morning, one boy told his father, a scoutmaster, about the abuse.
The camp director, John LaBare, confronted Turley and “he readily admitted what he had done, expressed concern for his actions, immediately packed and returned to Canada,” according to a letter in Turley’s U.S. “perversion file.” The camp, meanwhile, was told Turley had returned home due to family problems.
Behind the scenes, camp officials requested that the Boy Scouts of America’s Texas-based national office create a “confidential file,” informally known as a “perversion file,” on Turley.
“The parents of the three boys agreed not to press charges if he would leave, but are quite prepared to do so if they hear of his involvement with scouting,” Scouts executive Buford Hill wrote.
Hill told the Los Angeles Times that he was following recommendations of the Boy Scouts of America at the time.
For three summers, ending in 1979, Turley worked at the Lost Valley Scout camp. (CBC)
“I don’t remember what we decided, other than we didn’t want this person on our staff,” Hill said. “Hopefully, he went back to Canada and that was their problem.”
In a written statement to the Los Angeles Times, Boy Scouts of America stated that within 25 hours of learning of Turley's conduct, they expelled him.
"In the 30 years since then, the BSA has continued to enhance its youth protection efforts as society has increased its understanding of the dangers children face," wrote spokesman Deron Smith.
When Turley was shown the 1979 confidential U.S. file created by the Scouts on him, however, he shook his head in amazement that officials had not contacted police.
“That probably would have put a stop to me years and years ago,” said Turley in an interview at an Alberta motel where he works as a manager and handyman.
“And yet I went back to the Scouts again and again as a leader and offended against the boys until they came forward.”
Others were shocked Turley even made it into the Scouts after his kidnapping conviction and commitment as a sex offender.
“He should have never been there in the first place,” the scoutmaster whose son was allegedly molested by Turley told the Los Angeles Times.
Back in Canada
Though The Fifth Estate found documents showing that Scouts Canada and its American counterpart have traded information about pedophiles banned from their organizations, it appears the two did not share information about Turley.
By August of 1979, Turley had returned to the Victoria area, and within a few years, he’d begun leading a local scouts troop.
Court records show that Turley took scouts on camping trips once or twice a month, often luring boys to his tent by offering warmth or comfort. He used skinny-dipping as a pretense to molest boys and plied them with alcohol.
In his Victoria home, stocked with ice cream, candy, alcohol and p0rn, he entertained an endless number of boys, including scouts.
'I absolutely wish now that I had thought about going to police rather than Scout House.'
—Scouting supervisor Jean Buydens
“He had an Atari and worked for a candy company and his cupboard was full of candy,” said Jason Davies, one of his victims. “This is where we wanted to go after Scouts.”
While a Scouts Canada leader, Turley also organized trips to the U.S. with his troop and recalls filing paperwork with the Boy Scouts of America to have the visits approved.
Jean Buydens, a scouting supervisor, recalls hearing whispers about parties where Turley offered boys beer and camp outings where he shared tents with boys.
“I was very suspicious of that,” says Buydens, adding she passed on what she heard.
The Fifth Estate spoke to parents, victims and Scouts executives familiar with Turley and found no evidence executives called in the police to investigate. Turley says he was never contacted by police at that time. Scouts Canada said it won’t comment on specific cases.
An assistant scoutmaster had also complained about Turley sharing his tent with boys, but the meddling assistant was moved to another troop, CBC News has learned.
As rumours persisted in the mid-1980s, Scout House, the regional headquarters, asked Turley to resign. Scouts Canada added him to a “confidential list,” sources say. The exact date is unknown.
“It should have been handled differently,” says Buydens. “I absolutely wish now that I had thought about going to police rather than Scout House, but I thought talking to Scout House would be enough.”
In 1988, Turley sexually assaulted a child at a swimming pool. He was sentenced to 30 days in jail and banned from associating with youth groups such as Scouts, YMCA and the Little League.
If you have more information on this story, or other investigative tips, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
It was not until 1995 that police began their first large-scale investigation into Turley – 16 years after the Boy Scouts of America created a “perversion file” and nearly a decade after its Canadian counterpart put him on their “confidential list.”
In the end, it was not the Scouts organization that informed Saanich, B.C., police, but rather a suspicious girlfriend.
Turley was convicted in 1996 of sexually abusing four boys, three of whom were scouts, but later admitted to having at least a dozen victims.
In 1971 at age 18, Turley began more than a year of molestation with his first known victim, nine-year-old Joey Day.
Turley had moved from Toronto to Victoria as a member of the Canadian military, and had befriended Day's mother.
He offered to take Joey to cub scout meetings, but instead Turley often took the boy to his apartment.
“He fed me alcohol and I believe he was drugging me,” said Day. “I would wake up and I’d be naked in his bed.”
During an undercover sting, Turley later admitted to an officer that being involved with the Scouts organization was a “good way to recruit young boys.”
Turley served five years in prison and seven years of long-term supervised parole, which he completed in 2009.
When The Fifth Estate and the Los Angeles Times tracked him down in Alberta earlier this year, Turley said his sexual impulses are now under control thanks to an intense sex-offender program he underwent.
He’s no longer that “monster” moving from “troop to troop picking out people who I thought would be easy to offend against,” he said. “Rick Turley today is a caring loving person who just wants to stay below the radar.”
But he added that he believes the very nature of Scouts made it an easy place to find targets.
“If I look back at my own self, the availability, the trust that was involved with the parents at the time,” said Turley. “I was … the nice guy, who wanted to do everything.”
Much in Scouts has changed since the 1970s and 1980s when Turley used the movement to find his victims.
Since 1997, Scouts Canada has required police record checks, reference checks and a special screening interview for all adult volunteers and staff.Richard Turley, who now lives in Alberta, says Scouting is a "flawed movement." (CBC)
The organization’s policies dictates that individuals accused of any sexual abuse are immediately suspended and then investigated, with information passed along to police and child protection authorities.
Scouts Canada also has a stringent “two-deep rule” requiring that two fully screened, registered leaders be present with youth at all times.
Turley recalls always having adult leaders present on his Scouts outings. “It didn’t stop anything,” he says.
Seattle-based lawyer Tim Kosnoff, who has viewed the U.S. “perversion files,” says historically the U.S. Boy Scouts “routinely” chose not to notify police when aware of child molesters, instead noting them in their own secret files.
Despite all the changes made to the Scouts organization, Turley maintains that “Scouting is still a flawed movement.”
“If I was a parent, I would never put my kids in Scouts.”Oct 25, 2011 at 12:49 pm #1794885
Emotional issue for sure.
Lots of myth being spewed too. No facts backing up what is said either.
I have no sympathy for abusers, however-
1."According to the Office of Justice Programs of the United States Department of Justice, in New York State the recidivism rates for sex offenders have been shown to be lower than any other crime except murder.Another report from the OJP that studied recidivism of prisoners released in 1994 in 15 states accounting for two-thirds of all prisoners released in the United States that year, reached the same conclusion."
2.Sex offenders are more likely to kill their victims due to the harsh consequences
dealt them if caught. So what you might think is just punishment, isn't being a deterrent
but rather having the unintended consequence of further harming victims.Oct 25, 2011 at 12:57 pm #1794887
Hi David – yes, I read that previously. However, it does not specify pedophila by itself and includes a wide range of sex offences. I would be curious to identify it alone with respect to stats. I searched but could not find any on the web.
Regardless, it is sick as hell.Oct 25, 2011 at 2:00 pm #1794908
spelt with a tParticipant
@speltLocale: SW/C PA
Do Most Sex Offenders Re-offend? (at the bottom)
It is important to note that not all sex crimes are solved or result in arrest and only a fraction of sex offenses are reported to police. The reliance on measures of recidivism as reflected through official criminal justice system data (i.e., re-arrest or reconviction rates) obviously leaves out offenses that are not cleared through an arrest (and thereby cannot be attributed to any individual offender) or those that are never reported to the police. For a variety of reasons, many victims of sexual assault are reluctant to report their victimization to the police. For these reasons, relying on re-arrest and reconviction data underestimates actual re-offense numbers
The majority of rapists and child molesters are repeat offenders and as in this case, it sometimes only comes out years after the damage has been done, if it comes to light at all.
In addition, the majority of undetected rapists are serial rapists who also commit other
forms of serious interpersonal violence. In a study of 120 undetected rapists in the
Boston area, 63% were serial rapists. These 76 serial rapists had, on average,
attacked 14 victims, and were responsible for:
• 439 rapes and attempted rapes
• 49 sexual assaults
• 277 acts of sexual abuse against children
• 66 acts of physical abuse against children
• 214 acts of battery against intimate partnersOct 26, 2011 at 8:09 am #1795169
So in other words, if the criminals are not caught, they keep doing crimes?
As Johnny Cash said "you can run on for a long time".
That could be said of many types of crimes. You lose the comparison of recidivism with other criminal acts and the fact that treatment is a good option for many sex offenders.
Doesn't it make sense to educate everyone so they can recognize and report these offenses?
Many sex offenders, including pedophiles start very young and in response to being
abused themselves. And very many are treatable. Locking them up forever or the even more expensive cost of execution isn't where most money should be spent.Oct 26, 2011 at 8:43 am #1795184
@kat_pLocale: Pacific Coast
From everything that I have read and heard, when it comes to pedophilia, at best we can expect the offenders to learn not to act upon their desires. That kind of wiring in the brain apparently cannot be changed, but the impulses to act -can be controlled.
I think a parent's response to want to go "take care" of the offender, is very natural and understandable. I would expect to feel the same way should my daughter be hurt by someone. I also expect that my natural impulse not be indulged by society at large. I do not believe in the death penalty- ever. I would hope that a parent's rage and pain and desire to physically hurt the offender, be acknowledged. I don't think it is the place of society and our judicial system to carry out that visceral desire of the victim and their families, to hurt the offender.
Until we find a better way to treat and deal with pedophiles, the burden of our so far inadequate system, should be carried by the offenders, and not the kids that could be hurt by a released pedophile. So basically, depending on how far the pedophile went, I would not give them a second chance under the current system. I would not hurt them, torture them or kill them, but I would not release them. Meantime we can study ways to deal with this in the best, most humane way. If giving someone a second chance means taking a chance on them hurting another child, then no, no second chances. Even if you just look at it clinically ,as a disease, we would not release a person with an infectious disease, even if it meant taking their freedom away.Oct 26, 2011 at 8:52 am #1795189
"…including pedophiles…And very many are treatable."
Please provide statistics for this because I believe that this is NOT the case with pedophiles.
Regarding the idea of retribution. By locking up a pedophile in the current prison system, they are generally provided with a death sentence. Most are killed by other inmates for their crime.Oct 26, 2011 at 9:38 am #1795205
Didn't take much of a google to start finding some evidence.
"Even among child molesters, about 18 percent had been arrested for similar offenses before, and only 3.3 percent of those released in 1994 were arrested again for a crime against a child."
However they do say too-
"A few, however, fit the mold of a serial pedophiles. The study documents an unidentified man who was first arrested in 1966 and continued to molest children in the 1970s and 1980s until he was sentenced to 11 years in prison, gaining release again in 1994."
So a few terrible cases are coloring the views of many as to what the real numbers are.
My opinion is that education is where the money should be spent. You wouldn't believe
how resistant to training the local school district is. And they just had their school
psychologist sent away for 14 years for child molestation. And another junior high kid
kill himself over bullying.
The Boy Scouts now require every adult to take a training and require there always be
two adults present when with kids. They are starting to get it.
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