A former employee of the Boy Scouts of America has been arrested for possession of child pornography.
According to federal prosecutors, 34-year-old Russell Ruth worked for Camp Babcock-Hovey in Ovid. In early March, Yahoo reported to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children that a subscriber uploaded five suspected child pornography files to one of their servers. Police traced the files to an email address belonging to Ruth, who lives in Lyons. Last month, a search warrant executed at his Ditton Street home resulted in hundreds of images and videos involving minor boys being recovered.
Ruth made an appearance in U.S. District Court Monday and is being held pending a detention hearing Wednesday.
Since Ruth was employed with the Boy Scouts, investigators are asking anyone that might have information related to the case to contact the Buffalo office of Homeland Security at 716-464-5949.
Statement from Seneca Waterways Council, Boy Scouts of America:
“For the last several weeks we have been participating with multiple law enforcement agencies regarding the investigation into Russell Ruth.
This individual’s behavior is abhorrent and runs counter to everything for which the Boy Scouts of America stands. Upon learning of the investigation, we took immediate action to remove this individual and prohibit him from any future participation in our programs.
At this point, we have been advised by law enforcement, there is no evidence of any improprieties happening anywhere within Camp or any Scouting program.
Nothing is more important than the safety of our youth members. We seek to prevent child abuse through comprehensive policies and procedures to serve as barriers to abuse. These include a thorough screening process for adult leaders and staff, criminal background checks, requiring two or more adult leaders be present with youth at all times during Scouting activities, the prompt mandatory reporting of any allegation or suspicion of abuse and advocating on behalf of victims when abuse is identified.
Anyone with any information on potential abuse should contact authorities to ensure the safety of our youth, in and out of Scouting.”