The pastor of a Charlotte church says that a man who admitted to molesting Boy Scouts in the 1970s worked at a church daycare for the past decade.
According to Pastor Rush Otey of Selywn Avenue Presbyterian Church, Thomas Menghi Junior worked at the church's daycare starting in 2002.
During an interview with the Associated Press released on Thursday, Menghi admitted that he molested as many as 10 boys from Troop 786 in Fayetteville in the early 1970s.
Menghi was just one of thousands of former scout leaders named in secret files on suspected abusers kept by the Boy Scouts of America and released under a recent court order.
He told The Associated Press that he was usually drunk when he had sex with boys.
He was in his late 20s, living in a Fayetteville motel and working as Tupperware deliveryman.
He invited boys from Troop 786 as young as 11 years old to ride with him along his route, requesting that they come to his room to spend the night before so they could get an early start.
"Yes, I abused kids," Menghi, now 69, admitted in an interview Wednesday with The Associated Press. "But just how many and other details I can't remember. It was a long time ago and I was in a fog."
Pastor Otey told WBTV that Menghi began working at the daycare in 2002. He left for a while and then came back to the daycare.
Menghi's position was eliminated in a restructuring move.
"At no time during Mr. Menghi's employment were there hints, suspicions, observations, or allegations of any inappropriate conduct related to sexual abuse, molestation, or neglect of duties," a statement from the church obtained by WBTV said.
"Had there been such accusations from any child, parent, supervisor, volunteer, or co-worker, this would have been reported immediately to the proper authorities, and Mr. Menghi (or any other employee or volunteer associated with the Church or Child Development Center) would have been suspended or terminated."
Menghi cleared every criminal records check by the Selwyn CDC and the State of North Carolina, and every other reference check, the church told WBTV.
"We understand the anxiety and stress and disappointment and anger and fear that this report has created," Pastor Otey said. "We stand ready to provide care and support as well as deepest prayers, as we continue to hold sacred the trust and responsibility of caring for, nurturing, and educating children."
Otey told WBTV that Menghi never mentioned he was once associated with the Boy Scouts, so the church had no reason to contact them about Menghi's past.
They first learned about the connection on Thursday when the article was published.
The Boys Scouts of America Public Relations released a statement saying "There have been instances where our efforts to protect youth were plainly insufficient, inappropriate, or wrong. Where those involved in Scouting failed to protect, or worse, inflicted harm on children, we extend our deepest and sincere apologies to victims and their families" .
WBTV checked with CMPD. Officers say they have not received any complaints about Menghi.
WBTV also checked with police in Union County and Monroe where Menghi lives. Both departments say they have not received complaints.
Mark Turner, Scout Executive of Mecklenburg County Council, says his office has never had contact with Menghi. Turner says Menghi never registered or volunteered in Mecklenburg.
Thursday, December 12 2013 2:11 PM EST2013-12-12 19:11:17 GMT
HORRY COUNTY, SC (WMBF) – The chief of Horry County Fire Rescue is presenting a strategic plan to improve the department and make the county safer. The plan includes improving equipment, increasing manpower,More >>
The chief of Horry County Fire Rescue is presenting a strategic plan to improve the department and make the county safer.More >>
Thursday, December 12 2013 1:43 PM EST2013-12-12 18:43:06 GMT
FLORENCE, SC (WMBF) - The South Carolina Department of Public Safety is kicking off their Sober or Slammer Campaign this Thursday, December 12. The campaign focuses on preventing deaths and collisionsMore >>
The South Carolina Department of Public Safety is kicking off their Sober or Slammer Campaign this Thursday, December 12. The campaign focuses on preventing deaths and collisions due to impaired driving during the holiday season.More >>
Thursday, December 12 2013 1:38 PM EST2013-12-12 18:38:27 GMT
MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) – A homeless couple was robbed by a man with a gun Wednesday night outside the Helping Hand community outreach center. The incident happened at about 11:05 p.m. in the parkingMore >>
A homeless couple was robbed by a man with a gun Wednesday night outside the Helping Hand community outreach center.More >>
Thursday, December 12 2013 1:34 PM EST2013-12-12 18:34:18 GMT
HORRY COUNTY,SC (WMBF)- An 18-wheeler truck jack-knifed on Highway 544 near Highway 31, and lanes heading towards Conway are currently shut down. According to information from the South Carolina HighwayMore >>
An 18-wheeler truck jack-knifed on Highway 544 near Highway 31, and lanes heading towards Conway are currently shut down.More >>
Thursday, December 12 2013 12:59 PM EST2013-12-12 17:59:38 GMT
CONWAY, SC (WMBF) – Conway police responded to a hospital emergency room after receiving a call about a shooting. One male victim was shot in the leg, said Captain Tammy Carter with the Conway PoliceMore >>
Conway police responded to a hospital emergency room after receiving a call about a shooting.More >>
Thursday, December 12 2013 11:07 AM EST2013-12-12 16:07:09 GMT
HORRY COUNTY, SC (WMBF) – Over the past year, Horry county has become a hotspot for TV shows, reality shows, music videos and TV commercials. The county believes it is now time to step in and establishMore >>
From Myrtle Beach to Georgetown, our area is a backdrop for several TV shows. Horry County officials say they're getting more interest, for TV shows, movies, and even production companies considering relocating. The county wants to be ready before more step in and start filming. More >>
Thursday, December 12 2013 8:56 AM EST2013-12-12 13:56:27 GMT
In October 2013, 18-year-old Martha Childress' life changed forever. As she awaited a taxi to take her back to her dorm room on the campus of the University of South Carolina, Childress was struck by aMore >>
In October 2013, 18-year-old Martha Childress' life changed forever.More >>
Thursday, December 12 2013 8:09 AM EST2013-12-12 13:09:40 GMT
It's the holiday season in the Grand Strand and Pee Dee. Here's a list of family-friendly events to enjoy. EVENTS IN MURRELLS INLET Annual Christmas Parade, Sunday, Dec. 1 at 3 p.m. Get in the holidayMore >>
It's the holiday season in the Grand Strand and Pee Dee. Here's a list of family-friendly events to enjoy.More >>