AG Nessel: Five investigations looking into Boy Scouts of America claims

Beth LeBlanc
The Detroit News

Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel's office has five investigations looking into claims against the Boy Scouts of America and could be issuing charges in one of the cases soon. 

Nessel told reporters Monday that her office is sorting through about 5,000 claims, most linked to a massive federal civil sexual abuse lawsuit against the organization. 

The organization's insurance company earlier this month agreed to contributed $800 million into a fund for victims of child sexual abuse in return for being released from further liability for abuse claims. The payment would bring the amount of money in the proposed settlement trust to more than $2.6 billion.

Boy Scouts of America uniforms are displayed in a retail store at the headquarters for the French Creek Council of the Boy Scouts of America in Summit Township, Pa. Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel said Monday her office has ongoing investigations into abuse claims in Michigan involving the group.

Nessel said her office is combing through the Michigan links within the federal civil lawsuit to determine if those incidents could lead to state charges. Many of the claims involve out of state campers. 

"A lot of these were out of state residents who would come into Michigan" for Boy Scout camps, Nessel said. 

Anyone with information that could aid the investigation can call an investigation hotline at (844) 324-3374 between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, according to Nessel's office. 

Nessel announced in June that her department and the Michigan State Police would investigate the group to determine whether charges linked to Michigan-specific allegations were appropriate. 

The more than 110-year-old organization filed for bankruptcy last year to create a compensation fund for potentially thousands of men molested as youths by scoutmasters and other leaders. 

At the time, the organization estimated between 1,000 and 5,000 victims would ultimately seek compensation, but Boy Scouts of America estimated in court records that more than 12,000 boys have been molested by 7,800 abusers since the 1920s. 

When Nessel announced the investigation in June, Boy Scouts of America said it shared Nessel's commitment to support victims and would "cooperate fully" with her investigation.

Michigan-specific claims that have been made in the civil case against the Boy Scouts of America have been reported to local law enforcement, the group said.