The letter-writers also said, "We are only a small fraction of the Kanakuk survivors, yet our collective abuse experiences span from the 1950s to 2022." (Kanakuk was founded in 1926 and served more than 450,000 campers since then, according to its website. Many of its "kampers" come from affluent evangelical families living in Texas.) Kanakuk Kamps, a Branson-based Christian sports camp network that draws thousands of youths every summer many from the Kansas City area is facing two lawsuits alleging sexual abuse by a former director. Wake up KKuk. Kanakuk leadership maintains they had no advanced knowledge of his behavior, and Newman was a "master of deception. Its time to stop the clock for child sex abuse survivors, Phillips said. He testified about statutes of limitations being a benefit because memories can fade over time, and of his concerns about reviving claims which had been ended because of the current statute. She later learned her abuser has worked with children at multiple institutions in the decades since her abuse, she said. Both of my sons attended Kanakuk during this time period while Pete was a director. It is 52. Pete Newman receives two life sentences plus 30 years in Missouri state prison based on multiple counts of statutory sodomy and child enticement involving child abuse on Kanakuk property. filed by Sen. Pete Flores (R), propose the complete removal of civil statutes of limitation for sexual offenses against a child. Anything less than what this bill proposes gives perpetrators and the institutions that harbor them an advantage over abused children and their recoveries. Parents and campers regularly report to Joe White and other camp leaders about incidents of Newmans nudity with campers. My brother was silenced with an NDA," one of the family members told CBS 11. Take action by signing this petition to urge Joe White and Kanakuk Ministries to allow victims to have a voice. Monday's hearing was on legislation that would extend the civil statute of limitations for survivors of childhood sexual abuse. The law was telling me there was nothing to be done about it, and the clock had run out on me. Two days later, survivors and advocates connected to Kanakuk and other camping organizations rallied on the steps of the Texas Capitol to promote House Bill 206 and Senate Bill 751. Joe Whites private pilot, Robert John Morgan, who flies him to speaking engagements and medical appointments, is indicted on charges of sodomizing a female victim under the age of 14. Do they have access to the Internet? Survivors of child sexual abuse are attempting to enact laws in Missouri and Texas to change the legal landscape for Christian camps that cater to children and teens. Kanakuk leadership reacts in various ways, including visiting families to get more information and disallowing some reporting parents children to return to camp. Hoffpauir was one of several survivors of childhood sexual abuse, including from Kanakuk and Boy Scouts of America, who testified at a House judiciary hearing Monday night in support of a bill that would extend the civil statute of limitations for survivors of childhood sexual abuse. Because of the shame he felt for what was done to him, he did not tell anyone about his abuse until 2009, when his abuser was on trial and he told his wife. Newman continues grooming and abusing campers. Key facts and new revelations about sexual abuse at Kanakuk Kamps: No More Victims, a Kanakuk watchdog created by survivors and their families, has NewsMallory Challis | February 21, 2023. I need Jesus to forgive me for my sins they are all the same to Him.. that is sin. Others in support of the bill included a survivor of sexual abuse from a Boy Scouts leader in Missouri, a family member of a Boy Scouts sexual abuse victim who died by suicide, several advocates, and an attorney for victims of sexual abuse in Kansas City, who said he has to turn away "hundreds" of victims who are past the statute of limitations. i also was, last year, the sole reference for a young woman who got hired as a camp counsellor in another camp. Let me start by saying that I am not here to protect some sex offender, AuBuchon said. Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window), Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window), Click to email a link to a friend (Opens in new window), Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window), Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window), Click to share on Tumblr (Opens in new window), Click to share on Pinterest (Opens in new window), Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window), Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window), Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window), Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window), West Virginia religious freedom bill headed to governor, Religious schools can build a community of faith without discriminating. There should be an alarm going off, DiGiorgio said. i have a good friend whose daughter was raped by a camp employee in kerrville many years ago. The most pressing issue I remember was we have to tell your parents, Jones said. For years, a former staffer at Kanakuk Kamps, one of the countrys most popular Christian summer camps, abused dozens of boys. As a victim of sexual abuse by a family friend and babysitter, I can tell you that the majority of sexual abuse is by people you trust and it is key that EVERYONE not just camps and schools recognize the signs of an adult or older child who is preying on younger children. Chief executive Joe White was given a hard copy, said Scott Hastings, Dallas-based attorney for No More Victims LLC, which providedthe letter to the News-Leader in advance. Camp officials said they had terminated Lee Bradberry, 22, of Auburn, Ala., in July 2011 after learning from campers of an incident in which he had behaved inappropriately. After the criminal trial, civil lawsuit allegations emerged accusing other Kanakuk counselors and the camp administration of being aware of Newman's activitiesbefore Newman's criminal conviction, including incidents reported in 1999 and 2003. Victims of sexual abuse by former Kanakuk Kamp staffer Pete Newman (pictured above, currently serving 2 consecutive life sentences plus 30 years) have come Want to share a story? This is a place where victims ofKanakukabusecan finally feel seen, believed and supported. In a signed statement, White admits he knew of Newmans naked hot tub sessions, mutual masturbation, and nude running through the camp with minors but again, made no mention of having contacted law enforcement or legal authorities about these incidents. Newman is currently serving two life sentences plus 30 years in prison. "So is 55 a reasonable timeframe to push that back? A lawsuit is filed in Missouri state court by a John Doe and his parentsalleging sexual abuse by Kanakuk Kamps. A representative for Kanakuk did not immediately respond to a request for comment, but declined to comment on similar allegations late last year, and said that "we continue to pray for all who have been affected by Pete Newman's behavior. "And I believed this narrative for over a decade.". On May 27, 2022, two days before the Kanakuk summer season started,USA Todaypublished a detailed report Survivors ,ex-employees say Kanakuk Christian camp ministered to its sexual predators. This national story drew from a collaboration withUSA TodaysMissouri affiliate which had released a three-piece investigative series earlier that week. I have been desperately trying to warn a church in MS about an admitted child sex offender who is a minister and was fired by Prestonwood Baptist for credible accusations of abuse by several boys in 1989. We try to watch our staff, and campers, and each other, like hawks. What would you add to this list? He was one of the top faces of Kanakuk, perhaps only second to CEO and owner Joe White, who still runs the camp to this very day.. These offenses include sexual assault of a child, aggravated assault of a child, continuous sexual abuse of a young child or disabled individual, sex trafficking of a child, compelling a child into prostitution and indecency with a child. The abuse includes encouragement of and participation in nude swimming, basketball, and four-wheeling; exposure and inspection of genitalia; one-on-one sleepovers; mutual masturbation sessions; oral sex; and sodomy all occurring while he is representing Kanakuk and promoted within its ranks. More:Former Kanakuk counselor Peter Newman named in new sex-abuse lawsuit, More:Lawyers honored for $20 million lawsuit against former Kanakuk camp director. You can learn more about our reasons, our requests, and examine existing evidencehere. This was a shock to everyone who has ever been to a camp or a parent of those children. An investigation would alsoholdcamp officials accountable for abuse, improvecamp conditions and providerestitution for any victims, No More Victims argues. Newman isnt the only Kanakuk employee to be convicted of sexual abuse. The bill also would allow civil actions that were barred or dismissed due to the civil statute of limitations to be revived within the confines of legislation. Jones said her abuser was fired by Kanakuk, but law enforcement was not called even after her abuser admitted he had committed the crime. However, if you have fewer than a handful of kids a 2nd adult provides accountability and deterrence, and if you have more kids than one adult can safely manage then a 2nd adult is needed from a pure management perspective. According to research, the average age of disclosure of child victims of sexual assault is 52. But he didnt survive past the age of 29, so now I refer to him as a victim, and Im trying to be his voice. Even defendants in this particular case, no matter how abhorrent, have a right to due process in the state of Missouri, and our job is to preserve the right to due process.. It hardly took any time at all for Pete for start sexually abusing me, Dygert testified. The law should reflect that, Legacy of Wounded Knee occupation lives on 50 years later, Holy Queer author seeks Black church inclusion beyond singing with choir. For decades, Joe White and other camp leaders knew about and facilitated sexual abuse against scores of children.. To suggest that we can't go up to those organizations and cap a statute, I think is inappropriate," Smith said. He said he grew up in Branson near Kanakuk and wanted to go there but his family couldnt afford it. But by the time new evidence was uncovered through national media investigations, Hoffpauir was too old to file a civil suit against the camp and its leadership. The two recent lawsuits were filed in Missouri and in federal court in Dallas. YesKanakuk is a sports camp, but seeking God and finding him is what the camp is all about. Former Kanakuk counselor Lee Bradberry is sentenced to 10 years in prison for sodomy and other crimes he committed while on Kanakuk summer staff. so you have to wonder how many more girls this creep assaulted over the years. Read our republishing, terms of use and privacy policies here. Kanakuk must be held to account. This is a topic too big for a blog site to grasp effectively. The abusive, criminal behavior Pete Newman admitted runs counter to everything Kanakuk Kamps has stood for over the past 85 years, the statement said. Rebecca Randles, the Kansas City lawyer representing John Doe DK and his parents, said the alleged victim, now 26, is from southwest Missouri. While many children have experienced a joyful summer at Missouri-based Kanakuk, for many others it was a nightmare that continues throughout their life and a perpetual trauma that a growing body of evidence shows could very well have been prevented had leadership acted as they should have. We all are sinners and even in a rough situation like this all sin is equal according to the Lord we are all guilty and deserve death. But in 2021, I saw video evidence that Kanakuk Kamps knew of Newmans predatory actions as far back at 1999, the year that I had met him, and they failed to act appropriately to protect myself and many other victims.. The nonprofit organization also employs about 1,800 staff members, tax records show. Thursday's open letter is not the camp's first brush with No More Victims. Additional coverage of abuse allegations at Kanakuk is available here: 2023 Baptist News Global. If this camp had had AND ENFORCED a 2-adult policy, I doubt very much that Newman could have molested anyone, at least not without the active and on-the-spot cooperation of other adults. Anyone that knows Pete knows that he was a completely off-the-wall, wild, and fun guy who was always involved in something crazy going on at camp. If people were more informed of the signs and behaviors, these cases would be less and less frequent. For years, I remember walking down to my parents room at night and putting my hand on the doorknob and wanting to go in to tell them, and going back upstairs and crying myself to sleep, because I didnt have the courage at the time to say something, she said. The camp made few public statements about the outbreak, and its communications office did not respond to multiple news media interview requests. The groups are seeking reforms in laws regarding the statute of limitations for sexual abuse. And somewhat bewildered. Tell us at[emailprotected], and well post another blog with recommendations for what to look for and ask when choosing a summer camp. Nearly 60 victims discovered in the Pete Newman criminal case by the time of trial. Four people testified in opposition to the bill, representing business and insurance -- with particular opposition to the portion of the bill which opens a window for a revival of claims. Kanakuk has worked hard to make sure that something like this never happens again. Many even take this burden to the grave. Missouri currently stops the clock at 31-years-old, and youre pushing child rape victims, forcing them to sprint a race when theyre struggling just ot survive and heal., This is not fair, and it makes justice impossible.. But HB 367 is a glimmer of hope. Pingback:Leading Off (3/15/11) | FrontBurner. The motion noted that thousands of campers attend Kanakuk camps every year and the vast majority have positive experiences., Simply put, Kanakuk truly believed they were running a good, Christian-influenced camp. And remember, even if youre already signed-up and deposit was sent, its never too late to ask these questions and demand more if you feel a camp is not doing their utmost to protect your child. 367, creates a cause of action for vulnerable victims to allow filing civil actions at any time before the victim is 55-years-old, and for situations which had been dismissed because of statute of limitation issues before the passage of the bill to be revived. The lawsuits allege camp officials knew about the mans troubling behavior, including swimming and riding four-wheelers in the nude with campers, but failed to remove him or keep him away from children. "A short statute of limitations can be lethal, as my family knows," Phillips said, later adding: "I used to refer to him as a survivor. Horrible things happen- it is the nature of our world and the nature of people. The newspaper did not receive a response to written questions sent to thatemail account by deadline. I have covered this case from the beginning and was in the courtroom when Pete Newman was sentenced. S/he should get help and a spell checker. This course not only places very strict rules on any kind of potentially problematic situations, such as showering and other daily life activities, it also equips those who have completed the course to recognize the actions of someone who is grooming kids to find children that will fall prey to them. He is prominently featured on the Kanakuk Kamps website and in camp videos and written materials. You have a serious problem. John Hobbs, who testified in support of the bill, and said he was abused by a former Boy Scout leader, asked: "Is it really worth today's world trying to suppress someone's life such as mine simply to save your extremely wealthy company and/or clients money? ", "(Leadership) stated they fired Newman as soon as they were aware of his abusive behaviors, and that he acted alone," Hoffpauir said. Pete was, without a doubt, one of the most influential people in my boys decisions to accept Christ. Joe White provided lavish gifts such as technology devices, camp merchandise, and Harry & David fruit baskets to several known victims. What happens if someone doesnt follow policies?). The second case, filed in federal court in Dallas, alleges Newman sexually abused a camper from 2001 through 2007, beginning when the boy was 10. I didnt have the words or the support. Kanakuk leadership received reports of Newman engaged in nude activity with campers as early as 1999, according to an affidavit of Newman's former supervisor.

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