Archive for Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Lawrence sex offender one of 14 Kansas men listed in Boy Scout files

October 23, 2012


James Douglas Jackson

James Douglas Jackson

A convicted Lawrence sex offender was one of 14 Kansas men listed in the recently released “perversion files” kept by the Boy Scouts of America and released Thursday by order of the Oregon Supreme Court.

According to the file, 72-year-old Lawrence resident James Douglas Jackson — convicted in Douglas County in 2001 of several sex crimes — was removed from a Kansas City, Kan.-area Boy Scout unit following allegations that Jackson sexually assaulted a boy during a scouting trip.

Jackson had been registered with a scouting unit in Kansas City since 1981, and the allegations allege that Jackson abused a boy in May 1985, according to the file, obtained from a database operated by the San Jose Mercury News. Days following the alleged abuse, Jackson was sent a letter indicating he’d been removed from the Boy Scouts.

Included in Jackson’s file is a three-page letter detailing the abuse. However, the letter is handwritten, and some of it is illegible.

In 2001, Jackson was convicted in Douglas County of four sex crimes, including two counts of criminal sodomy on a minor, and two counts of indecent liberties with a child. Jackson spent more than 10 years in Kansas prisons but was released in April of this year and is required to register as a sex offender for life.

The other 13 cases in Kansas include alleged abuse in several Kansas cities such as Wichita, Olathe, Leavenworth, Kansas City and Manhattan.

According to a criminal record search with the Kansas Bureau of Investigation, Jackson has no other arrests or convictions in Kansas.

Jackson’s file does not indicate whether the Boy Scouts reported the case to police. One of the major criticisms in the wake of the released reports is that the Boy Scouts failed to report many cases of abuse to authorities, instead concealing cases in confidential files to protect the organization.

— The Associated Press contributed to this report.


Enlightenment 5 years, 3 months ago

This is an awful disgrace to the BS that could have been prevented by reporting the pedophiles to the authorities. It's criminal to harbor these types of individuals allowing them to perpetrate over and over again. This situation is similar to the Catholic church and their cover up of sexual abuse among the clergy. These types of organizations need to stop supporting this type of behavior through failure to report and covering up the fact that abuse is ongoing in their organizations.

Tammy Copp-Barta 5 years, 3 months ago

My concern here is all this being brought up and the victim having to relive the event. Maybe he had counseling and is living a well adjusted life and now all this comes up and he has to go through it all again. My thoughts and prayers to the victim that you got the help you needed and this does not cause you undue mental stress all over again.

This does NOT mean I agree with sweeping this conduct under the rug by any means. I think pedophiles should be prosecuted and never see daylight again ..

paulveer 5 years, 2 months ago

Big B, of course they'll tell you it's not happening anymore, all the while banning gays and atheists.

BS has and continues to bring it on themselves.

Bob Forer 5 years, 3 months ago

For years now the right wing has been repeatedly arguing that we need more god in our lives. I disagree. God has always been prominent in Scouting, and, of course, is the raison d'être for the Catholic Church. Given the lessons and experiences of both organizations, perhaps a little less god would be more appropriate.

In my humble opinion, the "grace" of the Christian god encourages rather than inhibits harmful conduct by Christians against other others. All one has to do is "get right with god" and all indiscretion is forgiven and forgotten.

When someone tells me they are a "good Christian" I run like hell.

Bob Forer 5 years, 3 months ago

Son, if another person's religious viewpoints are so bothersome to you, and you are so uncomfortable and wavering in your faith that your only response is childish name calling, I'd suggest that you either double down and attend church more often to acquire a better understanding of Christian tolerance, or give it up all together. What ever you are doing now apparently is not working.

jhawkinsf 5 years, 3 months ago

Linking this type of crime to Christianity is as wrong as linking it to homosexuality. It might make you feel better. You are certainly entitled to your opinion. But it is a bigoted opinion. Nothing more, nothing less.

Bob Forer 5 years, 3 months ago

Shouldn't society attempt to protect children also?

Absolutely. However, I'd like to see us a little more proactive than simply passing a toothless law that does little to nothing in solving the problem. .

It's also illegal to sell drugs within a certain distance of a school zone, but that apparently has done nothing to keep drugs away from our children.

kansanbygrace 5 years, 3 months ago

Re: Did_...Boy Scouts of America shows NO apathy toward sex offenders. This organization is decades ahead of schools, churches, sports programs, 4-H, Boys and Girls Clubs, etc., in educating, training, screening, and procedurally structuring their activities to protect the Scouts.
BSA recognized the need long before law enforcement took it seriously enough to charge many of those reported by BSA, for their own reasons. The current barrage of charges only holds water if you ignore that Scouting proactively developed protective policies decades ago, long before Little League or school systems, and continually upgrades those policies as a highest priority.

John Kyle 5 years, 3 months ago

I agree. the scouts are very efficient at ferreting out gays, atheists and anyone who doesn't fit in to their white male xtian culture.

kansanbygrace 5 years, 3 months ago

Check our our District Roundtable sometime, qq, where leaders congregate monthly. Black, White, Native American, Latino, Asian, Men, Women, Muslim, Christian, Buddhist, Jewish, Mormon, all kinds except politically aggressive gays and athiests. Gays are not ferreted out, unless they molest Scouts, but the national policy is that in this organization, the politics of sexual preference identity are not part of the program.

Chris Golledge 5 years, 3 months ago

While I strongly disagree with the national policy on gays and atheists, what you are saying is at odds with reality. It's not like that.

Individual differences in beliefs within the organization are wide; if you want to see an argument, bring up this topic at meeting of adult Scouters.

Each unit is actually a part of the chartering organization, whether that is a religious group, school, VFW, whatever. IMHO, the national body should have left policy in this area to fall in line with whatever, if any, the chartering organization has.

kansanbygrace 5 years, 2 months ago

Then you should include law enforcement, schools, businesses, the armed forces, sports teams, Rotary Clubs, etc., for their "apathy" in that era also. The fact is, public action was "discretionary" 50 and 30 years ago, and today it is much less so. To say the BSA "is" apathetic is wrong.
The fact that the list exists which prevents those accused, even 60 years ago, from serving in the program, even when there was insufficient evidence to charge them, indicates Scouting acted out of a concern that even law enforcement did not possess in that day.

kernal 5 years, 3 months ago

The State of Kansas does not prohibit sex offenders from living within any specified distance from schools. If you look at the list of registered offenders in Douglas County, you will see at least one living within one block, if not across the street, from a grade school and another living next door to the O'Connell Youth Ranch.

I'd bet the farm there are many more across Kansas.

somebodynew 5 years, 3 months ago

You can try to go the route a city in Florida did awhile back (I can't remember which one). It is a small community and raised the limit as to how close a registered offender can live, and voila - - there was no place inside the city limits where they could live, because of the number of schools and where they were !!!

Not positive, but I think the courts eventually ruled that unconstitutional.

jhawkinsf 5 years, 3 months ago

Nor did the government, which represents both you and I. You should be held accountable just as much.

08Champs 5 years, 3 months ago

Toe - obviously you have an issue with the United Way besides the Boy Scouts - so just say it.

As for the Scouts in this area, I can assure you that not all groups follow all of the procedures that have been developed to protect children. You can HAVE rules and procedures, but enforcement and oversight must be adhered to just as closely. Does Camp Nash still have an open shower area that is used simultaneously by men and boys? Do the year-round camp outs still allow 14 year olds to sleep in the same tent as 18 year olds? Scout supporters will say this is all clean and wholesome, but the facts tell a different story. I wish the protections weren't necessary, as it prevents some well-meaning leaders from having normal interactions - but the potential for abuse is too great to ignore.

kansanbygrace 5 years, 2 months ago

No, boys and men shower separately. Policy is enforced strictly. 14 and 18 yr olds in the same tent? No. 18 yr olds have "aged out" of Scouting, and may not be in the same tent with registered Boy Scouts, the one exception being if the 14 yr old is the 18 yr old's SON. EXCEPT that in a Venture or Exploring unit, Scouts tent with Scouts, and some Venture units allow members older than 18, but no younger than 14. That is a good point to make, 08.

JustMyThought 5 years, 3 months ago

I wish that the LjWorld would have also printed information about the BSA Youth Protection initiative that began 25 years ago and that continues to evolve into one of the most comprehensive youth protection programs around for serving youth. My thoughts and prayers go out to any victim (and their families) no matter what, no matter when. It is just my thought that the LjWorld reporter could have come forward from 1985 and factually mentioned that every scout handbook has a parental youth protection pamphlet that they are to read together with their child. It is just my thought that the LjWorld reporter could have factually mentioned two-deep leadership requirements. It is just my thought that the LjWorld could have factually mentioned mandatory background checks. My son is safe in scouts in Douglas County and he is on his way to Eagle.

MYOB 5 years, 3 months ago

Because of course people can NEVER change! Right?

kernal 5 years, 3 months ago

MYOB, please provide citation(s) of any rehabilitation programs proven successful for child sex offenders. I'm sure every state in the Union would love to know about any successful rehab program as would some offenders.

Life long incarceration and lobatomies don't count.

kernal 5 years, 3 months ago

Agnostick, known child sex offenders are generally kept separate from the general prison population in this country.

JustMyThought 5 years, 3 months ago

It is just my thought that the LjWorld reporter could have factually researched

08Champs 5 years, 3 months ago

Commendable that Scouting has provided this level of awareness - and I'm sure it has helped some young scouts from devastating incidences. But just because guidelines are printed does not mean they are followed. You are very familiar with Scouting locally - can you answer if adult men and young scouts are still showering together at Camp Nash? I'm sure I've become more sensitive about this practice due to the abhorrent Mr. Sandusky, but in this day and age it does not seem as "wholesome" and 'we're all just guys here". Yes?

JustMyThought 5 years, 3 months ago

To your inquiry. My son has camped and showered many times at several locations and at no time was an adult allowed in the showers with the youth. Behavior was appropriate. Protecting the rights of youth in america in general have certainly developed in the last 50-25 years as a nation. Laws and reporting practices gained ground through education and training and enforcement in the best interests of the kids as we came into the 21st century. New laws in our nation, as a nation, continue to emerge and evolve and be enforced to protect children in all demographics.

08Champs 5 years, 3 months ago

I don't think anyone would dispute what you have outlined - that the increased attention focused on the tragedy of pedophelia (as well as sexual harassment, domestic violence, etc) has increased the need to address the issues in a way they were not previously. I will tell you that when my son attended Camp Nash, adult men were in the showers with scouts. This was in the last 10 years, not 25 years ago. Again, it could be an isolated incident or just with one particular troop, and you point out it was not the practice of your group, but it happened.

Chris Golledge 5 years, 3 months ago

One of two things: Either the adults were in gross violation of youth protection policies, or they went in there, two or more, never one. because they believed the boys were causing trouble of some sort or another.

If the former, believe it was an isolated incident.

I was at a camp once and my son had had a bad day; so, I took him for a walk and a chat. When we got back, I found out they I'd caused a bit of a stir and that the staff were about to come after me until one of the other adults explained it was just a father-son talk.

Tammy Copp-Barta 5 years, 2 months ago

Camp Naish has a new shower facility. It has separate areas for Men, Women and youth.

SWJayhawk13 5 years, 2 months ago

As someone who works at a BSA Camp (not Nash, though), allowing underage scouts to shower with adults would completely violate Youth Protection -- a training every adult is required to have completed before they can be at camp (staff and parents/leaders). That kind of violation would be enough to shut a camp down. If a staff member saw something like that happening and didn't report it, they would be immediately terminated and could face legal ramifications.

Youth Protection requires separate facilities for under 18 males, above 18 males, and then another for females. Adults can't stay in the same tent (unless it's a father and son) as youth. In addition, we're mandated reporters. If we have any suspicion that any kind of abuse is happening, we have to report it.

This has been a black eye for the BSA, but the BSA has put in place new standards, and at least in my experience, aggressively ensure that the standards are followed.

08Champs 5 years, 2 months ago

I'm glad to hear Nash has a new facility - like I said, I hear all the guidelines, but have also been there when they weren't followed - and that was less than 10 years ago. I'm sure every family wants to feel comfortable that their scout is protected.

oldbaldguy 5 years, 3 months ago

Scouting has come a long ways and does lead many organizations in youth protection. When I came back to Scouting as a adult I was shocked by the requirements compared to when I was a kid back in the 60's. Pedophiles will always be around. Youth organizations have to have procedures in place to try to stop them. Scouting has done that in the last two decades and should be recognized for it. However, it does not excuse prior inaction or attempts to cover up in the past.

bearded_gnome 5 years, 2 months ago

LJW: your article has a serious omission: no mention of where Jackson has lived/is living now. no mention of his current status RE probation/monitoring etc.

sadly this dude was pre sentencing to Larned state for the habitual sex offenders.

Agnostick is right, it is very very rare for these kinds of offenders t be truly rehabilitated.

kansanbygrace 5 years, 2 months ago

actually, mr gnome, the six most recent studies reveal a 4.1% to 5.6% rate of recidivism for these criminals, lower than for most categories of crimes. I know it's not popular to say so, however.

Shaun Hittle 5 years, 2 months ago

Bearded gnome, In article says he's a lifelong registered sex offender, and his address is listed in Kansas sex offender registry. We only identified him as a Lawrence resident.


bearded_gnome 5 years, 2 months ago

Shaun, but hasn't it been public information where he is and has been living?
yes I'm glad he's an RSO, but again, that doesn't tell us much beyond the registry.

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