CHARLESTON, South Carolina (Reuters) - In the wake of the Penn State child sex abuse scandal, The Citadel military college in South Carolina, revealed on Saturday that it had investigated accusations against a camp counselor but took no action.
The man has since been jailed on separate charges of molesting five boys in Mount Pleasant, near Charleston, South Carolina.
“We regret that we did not pursue this matter further,” Citadel President Lt. General John Rosa and Board of Visitors Chair Doug Snyder said in a statement.
The Citadel said it investigated four years ago accusations of inappropriate conduct with children by Louis Neal “Skip” ReVille, who was a counselor at the military school’s camp.
ReVille is a graduate of The Citadel, the college said, and worked as a counselor at the school’s camp for three summers between 2001 and 2003.
In 2007, a former camper at The Citadel Summer Camp informed the school that five years earlier, when he was 14, ReVille invited him and another boy into his room where the three watched pornography on ReVille’s computer and masturbated, college officials said.
“Because of the seriousness of the accusation, The Citadel’s general counsel conducted an investigation immediately, including traveling to the individual and his family and conducting an interview,” the statement said.
“A thorough review of Mr. ReVille’s records revealed no other complaints, and interviews indicated that he was highly regarded by those at camp. His file included a clean background check conducted by an outside organization. Unlike his admissions to current charges, Mr. ReVille strongly denied the accusation.”
After graduation from The Citadel, ReVille was a principal at Coastal Christian Preparatory School and had coached sports for years at several area schools and recreation centers, police said.
He was arrested in October 28 on the child molestation charges.
The Citadel said it was commenting on the incident now because of media requests since the arrest. Jerry Sandusky, the former defensive coordinator for the Penn State Nittany Lions, was charged on November 5 with sexually abusing eight young boys over a period of nearly 15 years.
That scandal has forced the resignation of some of Penn State’s biggest names, including the school’s president, its athletic director and its legendary football coach, Joe Paterno.
Editing by James B. Kelleher and Greg McCune