A list of about 50 New Jersey Boy Scout leaders accused of sexually abusing minors released Tuesday shows five names with ties to Atlantic and Ocean counties.
The list, which was compiled and released by the law firms of Greg Gianforcaro and Jeff Anderson & Associates, names one leader each based in Atlantic City, Hammonton and Barnegat Township, Egg Harbor Township and Egg Harbor City.
“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,” the Boy Scouts of America said in a statement.
All of the people listed were removed from the group and reported to law enforcement, the organization said.
Those named include Angelo Dellomo, of Troop 6 in Atlantic City; Vincent W. Glazewski, of Pack 68 in Hammonton; Charles Paul Geiger, of Troop 25 in Egg Harbor Township; William A. Chiappini, of Troop 73 in Egg Harbor City; and John T. Fitzgerald, of Troop 26 in Barnegat. The list does not state how long the men served as troop leaders or whether they were ever charged with the alleged abuse.
According to the law firms, these names were found in the Boy Scouts of America’s once confidential “Perversion Files,” reports of abuse kept by the national organization they said dates to the 1940s.
Sexual abuse settlements have already strained the Boy Scouts’ finances to the point where the organization is exploring “all available options,” including Chapter 11 bankruptcy. But now the financial threats have intensified.
The reason: States have been moving in recent months to adjust their statute-of-limitations laws so that victims of long-ago sexual abuse can sue for damages. New York state has passed a law that will allow such lawsuits starting in August. A similar bill in New Jersey has reached the governor’s desk. Bills also are pending in Pennsylvania and California.
Anderson said Tuesday that court testimony provided in an unrelated trial the firm was involved in revealed the Boy Scouts’ files documented 7,819 perpetrators and identified more than 12,000 victims nationally.
From there, the firms decided to link the names of the accused with locations and compile lists for New York and New Jersey, Anderson said.
“This is about the institution failing to do the right thing, failing to disclose the names,” Gianforcaro said. “It shouldn’t be us disclosing the names.”
The files were already made public and available through a searchable database created by the Los Angeles Times.
People are added to the Boy Scouts’ Volunteer Screening Database based on violations of scouting policies or suspected violations of policies, according to the organization’s statement. Once they are added, they are removed entirely from the group and prohibited from rejoining anywhere.
Glazewski resigned from the Boy Scouts in February 1986 at age 22 — he joined the Hammonton chapter in November 1985 — after an investigation by the state Division of Youth and Family Services, according to documents in the database.
According to the department’s abuse report, Glazewski took six children on a camping trip to Elm, Camden County, and gave them liquor, showed them pornographic magazines and other illicit behavior.
He pleaded guilty to five counts of endangering the welfare of a minor in Camden County Superior Court, and because he was on probation for similar charges, he was expected to receive a three-year sentence, according to a letter from William Ridge, Scout executive from the Atlantic Area Council, dated Sept. 25, 1986.
Geiger pleaded guilty to two counts of sexual assault for molesting numerous children from 1985 to 1987, according to an article published in The Press of Atlantic City in 1987.
Geiger was not a Scout leader at the time of his arrest but was a sixth-grade teacher at the Davenport School in Egg Harbor Township that year, according to the article.
Fitzgerald was arrested and charged with two counts of criminal sexual contact and one count of endangering the welfare of a child in 1988, according to the database.
The Boy Scouts suspended Dellomo in 1987 and informed parents that Dellomo told boys to undress and weigh themselves and perform a physical fitness test in the nude. The records do not show whether Dellomo was formally charged.
A bankruptcy by the Boy Scouts could be unprecedented in its complexity, potentially involving plaintiffs in virtually every state, according to several lawyers. It would be national in scope, unlike the various Catholic Church bankruptcy cases in the U.S., which have unfolded diocese by diocese.
“A Boy Scout bankruptcy would be bigger in scale than any other sex abuse bankruptcy,” said Seattle-based attorney Mike Pfau, whose firm is representing more than 300 victims in New York state.
However, Dallas-based trial attorney Michelle Simpson Tuegel, part of a team representing numerous sex abuse survivors, said bankruptcy might benefit the Boy Scouts and reduce any payouts to plaintiffs.
“It can be a tool that these institutions use to shield assets and avoid having to reveal some information,” she said. “In many ways, it’s a disservice to victims.”
List of Boy Scout leaders accused of sex abuse in New Jersey(tncms-asset)2f9b83f0-6683-11e9-a865-00163ec2aa77(/tncms-asset)
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
In a previous version of this story, the location where William A. Chiappini was reportedly a scout leader was incorrect.