LONG ISLAND, NEW YORK – An assistant scoutmaster living on Long Island in New York is facing charges of sexually abusing a 12-year-old boy while attending Boy Scouts meetings and retreats over an 11-month period in 2018.
The Nassau County police arrested 26-year-old Jonathan Spohrer at his home in North Bellmore on Thursday. Mr. Spohrer is facing charges of second-degree sexual conduct against a child, Spohrer pleaded not guilty in court on Friday.
Spohrer denies these allegations according to his lawyer, Joseph Carbone Jr.
“We look forward to vigorously defending these allegations in court and have faith in the legal system which presumes the innocence of the accused,” Carbone stated on Saturday.
Spohrer allegedly abused the boy when they were both attending Boy Scouts retreats in the state of New York from January to November of 2018, according to police.
Chris Coscia, who is the CEO of the Theodore Roosevelt Council of the Boy Scouts, said the organization is, “shocked and disgusted” by Spohrer’s alleged behavior.
“Upon learning of these reports, we removed this individual and prohibited him from any future participation in our programs. The Scouts have a multi-layered process of safeguards to prevent abuse,” said Chris Coscia in a statement.
Amid the news of alleged abuse by Spohrer comes at a time when the Boy Scouts of America are facing numerous lawsuits involving alleged sexual abuse and misconduct.
The Boy Scouts said last week it’d raise its annual membership fee by more than an 80 percent increase in 2020 as a way to ease the financial burdens being associated with litigation that’s ongoing from plaintiffs who allege scout leaders abused them when they were younger.
“The Boy Scouts of America made this difficult, but necessary, decision so we can continue to provide essential services that support once-in-a-lifetime adventures in a safe and welcoming place,” The Boy Scouts said in a statement.