State ex rel. Heart of Am. Council v. Hon. Charles H. McKenzieAnnotate this Case
A few weeks before his thirty-first birthday, John Doe filed suit against the Heart of America Council of the Boy Scouts of America and the national Boy Scouts of America organization (collectively, “the Boy Scouts”), alleging that the Boy Scouts were vicariously and directly liable for childhood sexual abuse allegedly committed by Doe’s former scoutmaster against Doe. The Boy Scouts moved for summary judgment, arguing that the childhood sexual abuse statute does not provide a basis for liability for anyone other than the actual perpetrator of the abuse, that they were not directly or vicariously liable for the scoutmaster’s acts, and that Doe’s claims were barred by the applicable statute of limitations. The trial court denied the Boy Scouts’ motions for summary judgment. Thereafter, the Boy Scouts filed a petition for writ of prohibition asking the Supreme Court to enjoin the trial court to sustain the Boy Scouts’ motions for summary judgment. The Supreme Court issued a preliminary writ and here made that writ permanent, holding that the statutes of limitations for Doe’s claims against the Boy Scouts have expired, and, by its terms, Mo. Rev. Stat. 537.046 does not provide a cause of action for childhood sexual abuse against non-perpetrators such as the Boy Scouts organization.