Boy Scouts Come Clean: 'Ineligible Volunteers' Suspected of Pedophilia

Database reveals 1,250 Boy Scout of America volunteers accused of sexual abuse.
3:00 | 10/18/12

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Transcript for Boy Scouts Come Clean: 'Ineligible Volunteers' Suspected of Pedophilia
institution, the boy scouts of america, is under fire. It is a part of every community around this country, trusted by millions of families. But tonight, the trust is shaken. The charge, years of suppressing and overlooking allegations of sex abuse by scout leaders. And abc's ron claiborne has been pouring over the evidence just released today. Reporter: It is a horror story 14,000 pages long -- allegations of abuse of more than 1,000 cub scouts and boy scouts. In many instances, their adult abusers never reported to police. They do not get to keep secrets about hidden changers to children. Period. End of conversation. Reporter: Files with memos with scouting officials, letters from victims spanning the years 1965 to 1985. They contain the names of more than 1,200 alleged pedophiles. In a third of the cases, the boy scouts of america says the accusations were not reported to police. It's now too late for them to be prosecuted because the statute of limitations has elapsed. Basically, the boy scouts turned their eyes away, told the molesters to go away and just hope this doesn't happen again. Of course it kept happening again. Reporter: Many of the accounts are chilling, like that of an assistant scoutmaster in rhode island accused of molesting a 12-year-old broy. He was confronted with the facts and admitted his role in the act. He was told he would no longer be allowed to serve in any adult capacity, and to stay away from scout x to avoid further possible trouble. There's no mention of police being called. And one memo, a scouting execive recommends dropping a case against a suspected abuser, writing, "if it don't stink, don't stir it." Today's revelations brought a sense of justice to some former scout victims of abuse. Today is also a victory for all the victims who suffer in silence and now their voice is heard. Reporter: The top scouting official in the country made this apology. There's no question that there are times in the past, these go back 40, 50 years old, where we did not do the job that we should have and that, and for people who were hurt, and for that we're profoundly sorry. Reporter: A decade ago, it was the catholic church hit with allegations of covering up for pedophile priests. A year ago, it was penn state university. Now, it's the boy scouts. And a top scouting official once wrote that a case of alleged child abuse was not prosecuted to protect the name of skoufting. The scouts say there are now a number of steps in place to protect children, including background checks and mandatory reporting of abuse accusations now. Ron, I want to go back to something you said. None of the names released today can be prosecuted? Reporter: These cases are 30, 40, 50 years old and almost every state of the country, the statute of limitations has rub out. All right, thank you so much, ron.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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