Tuesday, September 04, 2012

Friday hearing set on request for Kanakuk information

A Friday, September 7, meeting has been scheduled in U. S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas, to hear arguments from Kanakuk officials and the family that is suing them about Kanakuk's refusal to turn over names of sexual abuse victims of former camp director Pete Newman.

Lawyers representing the victim, referred to in court records as John Doe, are asking for the names to reveal a pattern of abuse by Newman that Kanakuk officials allegedly allowed to continue for years.

Newman is now spending two life sentences in a Missouri prison.

Kanakuk officials have said they won't release the victims' names because of concerns about the victims' privacy.

That claim was ridiculed in documents filed last week in U. S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas.

For years, Defendants’ actions and omissions allowed these persons to be victimized; and only now, since a lawsuit has been filed, are Defendants concerned about these persons’ rights.  Defendants should not have the power, now, to assert privacy on behalf of a third-party who they allowed to be victimized years ago. 
The names are not the only things Kanakuk officials are attempting to keep confidential, according to the filing. They also have refused to turn over Pete Newman's employment records, including any posisble disciplinary actions that were taken against him prior to the revelation that he had sexually abused a large number of children.

Kanakuk officials indicated they did not want these documents to fall into the hands of the media and the public.

Defendants in the lawsuit, in addition to Kanakuk, are its CEO Joe White and Newman.


Anonymous said...

Oh my, its so strange this never appears in a Branson news publication or radio station. Like always, if you can get it swept under the rug it never happens here.

This is not the utopia they want you to believe in SW Missouri.

The court should close this Kamp as being a public nuisance.
Dave R

Anonymous said...

As for concerns over the media publishing victims' names? Kanakuk needn't worry. The media, unlike the camp, has ethical standards, and actually uniformly apply those.