A former Freeporter who led Baldwin and Freeport Boy Scout troops in the 1980s was named in a report detailing alleged sexual abusers in the Boy Scouts of America. Guillermo Gonzalez, 84, was a leader of four Boy Scout troops from 1980 to 1982, according to public records, but was placed in the BSA’s Ineligible Volunteer File in 1984 after it was discovered he was paroled on a charge of second-degree sodomy.
It’s not clear if the charge involved a minor. Gonzalez, according to public records, was living in Miami in 1990, and contact information for him was not immediately available.
Gonzalez’s charges had been previously disclosed by law firms and media outlets, and was once again made public April 23 by Jeff Anderson & Associates — a law firm that specializes in childhood abuse cases. The firm’s report, available here, named 130 New York Boy Scout leader accused of sexual abuse. Other Long Island leaders came from Brentwood, Hicksville, Hewlett, Hempstead, Huntington, Manhasset, Northport and Williston Park.
A spokeswoman for The Boy Scouts of America said in an email, "We care deeply about all victims of child abuse and sincerely apologize to anyone who was harmed during their time in Scouting. We believe victims, we support them, and we have paid for unlimited counseling by a provider of their choice. Nothing is more important than the safety and protection of children in Scouting and we are outraged that there have been times when individuals took advantage of our programs to abuse innocent children.
Throughout our history, we have enacted strong youth protection policies to prevent future abuse, including mandatory youth protection trainings and a formal leader-selection process that includes criminal background checks. Since the 1920s, we have maintained a Volunteer Screening Database to prevent individuals accused of abuse or inappropriate conduct from joining or re-entering our programs, a practice recommended in 2007 by the Centers for Disease Control for all youth-serving organizations.
At no time have we ever knowingly allowed a perpetrator to work with youth, and we mandate that all leaders, volunteers and staff members nationwide immediately report any abuse allegation to law enforcement."
Anderson & Associates said in its report that claims against the individuals named may not have been fully evaluated in a civil or criminal court.