Another Pedophile

Discuss the latest news and rumors in the magic world.

Postby Richard Kaufman » 12/29/08 04:43 PM

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Postby Dustin Stinett » 12/29/08 04:57 PM

Not a new one; just an update on one reported on in July or August (though I cannot find the thread). While I cannot access the link you have (blocked here at work, probably due to content), it seems to me that they were able to tack on some federal child porn charges so he can do some really fun time if found guilty. (I know this because it's in my notes for my annual wrap-up.)

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Postby Tim Ellis » 12/29/08 05:25 PM

What gets me is how the magic community usually "knows" what's going on but prefers to turn a blind eye rather and pretend it's not happening rather than do anything about it.
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Postby Disparity1 » 12/29/08 05:37 PM

What the hell are you talking about?
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Postby Dustin Stinett » 12/29/08 05:52 PM

Thats not quite how I was going to put it, but close.

Thats quite an accusation, Tim.

Theres an enormous line between suspicion and proof. Just because someone thinks its so doesnt make it so. And doing something about it canand hasdestroyed reputations, careers, and lives more often than it has uncovered any actual wrong doing. More often than not, these kinds of suspicions are based on prejudice, phobia, and unsubstantiated rumors.

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Postby Kevin Connolly » 12/29/08 07:11 PM

Let's not kill the messenger boys. I know of a homosexual pedophile that has done time for his crime and is back in the magic collecting community. He MAY even post here from time to time.

If you don't like the post, feel free to delete.
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Postby Cugel » 12/29/08 07:29 PM

Dustin Stinett wrote:Theres an enormous line between suspicion and proof. Just because someone thinks its so doesnt make it so. And doing something about it canand hasdestroyed reputations, careers, and lives more often than it has uncovered any actual wrong doing. More often than not, these kinds of suspicions are based on prejudice, phobia, and unsubstantiated rumors.


A lot of what you say is true. Proving it is difficult and painful for everyone, and hearsay can get folks into a lot of trouble. But some of us have heard some pretty alarming and specific stories from very reliable sources. So, I think that what Tim Ellis says is true. There continue to be people involved in magic (some quite famous) who appear to be getting a free pass.

As Kevin said, delete this if it's unpalatable.
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Postby Disparity1 » 12/29/08 11:23 PM

First, I guess I have got to get me a different grapevine so I can hear about all this stuff while it goes on and then ignore it and let it continue like, well, apparently all you guys.

Secondly, it's horrible that someone is a pedophile, and pedophilia is the crime, but I'm not certain what further understanding I'm supposed to get by learning that this person is a homosexual. Is that worse, somehow? Or, even...relevant?
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Postby David Alexander » 12/29/08 11:34 PM

Rumor, innuendo, an alcoholic and mentally-ill mother, moronic police work, religious fanatics, incompetent psychotherapists, a politically aggressive district attorney in a losing race, a convicted perjurer, a biased and unethical television reporter, a grasping developer, biased newspaper reporting, accusations of ritual satanic abuse all combined in one place in the 1980s resulting in the largest and most expensive trial in US history lasting seven years and costing $15 million.

It destroyed the lives of the accused for no reason.

It was about child molestation and in the final analysis it was based on nothing.

So, when I hear people claiming that they know and that they hear from reliable sources I laugh. They have no idea what evidence is.
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Postby Jonathan Townsend » 12/29/08 11:41 PM

Apparently he'd been taking pictures of that kind there before

http://www.wsbtv.com/news/18262458/detail.html#-

News as it happens - commentary - maybe later.
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Postby Dustin Stinett » 12/30/08 12:19 AM

Im not killing the messenger; just what I know is too glib a message for such a serious subjectit only fuels the fire.

First, homosexual pedophile is a misnomer. The fact is that the vast majority of pedophiles live heterosexual lifestyles. But as soon as someone is labeled a pedophile, they are alsoalmost automaticallylabeled as gay. Equating one with the other is wrong on several levels.

And I can say without equivocation that reliable sources are not necessarily reliablethough they honestly believe that they are.

I have personal experience in this and I will give you as much detail as I can without names.

Background first: My experience occurred over ten years ago and involves an event that happened over 20 years ago.

The accused, a tutor (and a homosexual), was in his 20s at the time of the event.

The victim was 16 at that time.

I was unaware of the event when I befriended the accused.

I was approached (separately) by three very reliable sources who each warned me about this event (after all, I had young kids). Interestingly, neither had the exact same story, but they were close enough.

The victim, who was by then an adult, also contacted me (at the behest of one of the reliable sources).

I had the opportunity (for lack of a better word) to talk with this young man for over two hours. In that time, his story changed three times. Each time the transgression grew more benign. The last version would have had the accused being guilty of nothing more than bad judgment.

When I had the opportunity to speak with the accused about it, his story all but matched the last version of the victim.

Sadly, though I related this to the reliable sources, they accused me of covering for my friend preferring, instead, to believe the hearsay. It was easier for them, I suppose, since it matched their version of how the world works: Gay equals Pedophile.

Part of the problemand its something that leads to hearsay and vicious rumorsis a very simple lack of knowledge of the homosexual lifestyle; specifically language.

I have known many gay men over the years and without exception, they all refer to men younger than them as boys. It doesnt matter if they are in their 20s or even 30s: if they are younger, they are boys. The problem is that if a heterosexual overhears a gay man say something like, I met a boy or even I spent the night with a boy, what they are hearing in their minds is 12 year-old boy. And then the die is cast. And once those rumors hit, they stick. And reliable sourceswho honestly believe what they are sayingspread their version of the facts.

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Postby Kevin Connolly » 12/30/08 12:55 AM

homosexual pedophile is not a misnomer, at least in my statement. I said of the homosexual pedophile I know of. I didn't say all, a majority, 95%, etc. of homosexuals were pedophiles. I just said the one I know of. Since my post, I've been told of three others with the same M.O.
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Postby Dustin Stinett » 12/30/08 12:59 AM

And no doubt by reliable sources.

The point is, a pedophile is a pedophile regardless of sexual orientation. Why do we never hear the phrase "heterosexual pedophile" used?
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Postby Jonathan Townsend » 12/30/08 01:00 AM

FYI - youngsters when abandoned onto the streets QUICKLY learn what they can trade for safety.

I am sorry to see someone in our community was finding illicit pleasure at the expense of his audience members and the community's trust.
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Postby Disparity1 » 12/30/08 01:11 AM

Dustin Stinett wrote:And no doubt by reliable sources.

The point is, a pedophile is a pedophile regardless of sexual orientation. Why do we never hear the phrase "heterosexual pedophile" used?


Precisely. Can you imagine how curious it would sound to report on an Irish pedophile arrested yesterday? The extra detail is irrelevant, but when people hear a phrase like this, as listeners, they have to try to make it relevant. The only way they can do that is to equate the two.
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Postby Cugel » 12/30/08 01:26 AM

Dustin Stinett wrote:The point is, a pedophile is a pedophile regardless of sexual orientation. Why do we never hear the phrase "heterosexual pedophile" used?


Yes, exactly. And using the qualifier 'homosexual' is a distraction and tends to suggest the person's own prejudices. I also acknowledge the difficulty you faced in your single experience of this sort of matter, Dustin.

The fact is that people don't come forward with the details in serious cases for a number of reasons. Some don't feel it's worth the bother or that it's not their business. But usually because, while indicators of predatory behavior and "grooming" may exist (and of course be easily challenged unless they are through collated online activity or other hard evidence) it is often difficult to prove an offense. And if you can't guarantee you can prove it, why go through the hassle?

David Alexander may scoff about this matter (as he often does), but it's no joke.

I personally intervened in one case where a famous magician was trying to get minors to stay in his room at a convention. These kids found the offer attractive as it saved them money and they were close to a famous person. Now the minors could have stayed in the room and nothing may have transpired in the event, but all the warning signs would lead any sensible adult to discourage the window of opportunity being allowed to open. I had no idea about this person at the time and thought discouraging it was the best course of action. I have since heard numerous similar stories (hearsay of course) about that person and that they are well know for it amongst US pros but that no one with any knowledge of specific activities is known to have brought it to the attention of the authorities.

I know of another two cases where action was taken but is yet to be general knowledge and likely never will be. Of course, I am not going to air any of the details here, so naysayers may scoff all they want. The sources are indeed reliable, no matter whether that is a target for ridicule by some.

By the way, I would love to read Richard's views on this issue, since he started the thread!
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Postby Kevin Connolly » 12/30/08 01:47 AM

Yes reliable sources. Unless newspaper articles and court doucuments don't count anymore. These people are/were members here. I wouldn't be surprised if someone here could find out more just by looking in the archives here, let alone the web.

For me, I'm done with this thread.
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Postby Richard Kaufman » 12/30/08 02:06 AM

I've had pedophiles try to take advantage of me when I was young and managed to avoid it. It's disgraceful, but it's also a form of mental illness that is exceedingly hard to treat with success.

It's hard to have much sympathy for any adult having sex with a child even though the motivating force is mental illness.
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Postby NCMarsh » 12/30/08 03:37 AM

I believe this is the case David referred to, or at least a very similar one (and quite the cautionary tale about how destructive these allegations can be when false):

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/McMartin_preschool_trial

As for "homosexual pedophiles," when I worked at a residential summer camp during college we had a guy from the camp's insurance company come each summer to talk about warning signs of pedophilia and protecting yourself from false allegations. One of his points was that classic pedophiles -- i.e. those attracted to prepubscent children, not teenagers -- tend not to have a gender preference. It isn't about male or female, its about child .

So, you get a large number of men victimizing boys because its more convenient -- adult, non-relative men are just more often in situations where they can victimize a boy (priest, scout leader) than a girl.

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Postby Tim Ellis » 12/30/08 04:17 AM

For Dustin's information.

CASE 1: One of the people put in charge of a young magicians group had just been released from prison for inappropriate relations with a minor. The magic community felt he'd served his time and learned his lesson... and hey, he volunteered to do the job...

CASE 2: About 5 years ago there was another magician who people "knew" was a pedophile, but it wasn't until he actually molested a fellow magicians kids, then bragged about it to another magician that we were able to do anything about it. First, we had to convince the father his kids had been molested, then he was able to get them to admit what happened. Naturally, they didn't want to talk about it. Eventually they did and he's now in prison.

CASE 3-18: Of course, for every person who is caught, there are many others who keep getting away with it. It really is tragic.

Yes, I also know of magicians who are gay and flirt just a little too much at, perhaps, inappropriate moments.

One I know of had a young magician approach him wanting to stay in his hotel room at a convention because he'd missed the last train home. The magician told him in no uncertain terms it would not be appropriate and recommended he sleep in the hotel lobby.

I guess, in a politically correct world such as ours, it's more important than ever to be transparent in all of our dealings with other people, especially children.

When kids want to session with older magicians, regardless of sex, they need to do it in public or in groups. Gone are the days when a kid could just go over to an adult's house and stay up all night swapping card tricks.

When we have run conventions in the past, where there were older attendees who have a "repuatation", a close eye was kept on them to make sure they didn't gravitate towards the teenagers. Just as other magicians who had, in the past, stolen items were monitored in the dealers room. Just like kleptomania, it's a compulsion and it's better to stay out of temptations way.
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Postby David Alexander » 12/30/08 11:31 AM

Nathan is correct. I was referencing the McMartin case, easily the most egregious example of many such cases that were little more than hysteria allowed to run rampant in the 1980s and 90s. I broke the national story on the ritual satanic abuse hoax then running unchecked across the country in a cover story in The Humanist magazine.

As ever, Cugel mis-characterizes what I said. I was not "scoffing" at the problem nor do I consider child molestation "a joke." I was pointing out the dangers of accusations gone wild and how unsubstantiated charges can severely damage innocent people, something that should concern everyone.

However, just to be certain that the anonymous Cugel understands that I don't make light of such matters I will let him know that I am responsible for putting one of the most blatant magician/pedophiles out of business.

Guy Egbert Thompson, who used to post here under the name "Tonga," liked little boys and put himself in situations where he had access to them: junior magic clubs. He was a Lt Commander in the Navy and hung around the Mystics Magic Club of Long Beach when I was a kid. Later, after he left the Navy, he held a position of authority at the Magic Castle.

Thompson tried unsuccessfully to get to me and my younger brother when we were kids. Later, when I was an adult, I could do something about itand I did.

After Thompson left the Magic Castle he moved to Tucson, Arizona. I'd heard through the grapevine that Thompson had been accused of molestation there. I called and spoke with the sergeant in charge of the investigation. Seems the parents of the child didn't believe their own kid and the investigation was at a dead end.

I'd researched Thompson's behavior in LA and found that he'd already been arrested, tried and convicted of misdemeanor child molestation in LA County, something that didnt come up on the Tucson cops radar. I gave them the case number, disposition, etc. That was enough and the flood gates opened. When the dust cleared Thompson was convicted of 15 felony counts and served seven of a fifteen year sentence in Arizona State Prison. I was told privately that he was guilty of much more, but this was what they could convict him on.

Not knowing any of this, after leaving prison Thompson began posting here and at one point actually sent me a PM. I hadn't made a big deal about him being a member of the Forum, but when he tried a private email I let him know in no uncertain terms that I knew who and what he was and that he could go screw himself. He hasn't been here since.
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Postby Cugel » 12/30/08 04:21 PM

David Alexander wrote:As ever, Cugel mis-characterizes what I said. I was not "scoffing" at the problem nor do I consider child molestation "a joke." I was pointing out the dangers of accusations gone wild and how unsubstantiated charges can severely damage innocent people, something that should concern everyone.


I was referring to this comment, earlier, which clearly was a shot at my comments in the thread:

David Alexander wrote:So, when I hear people claiming that they know and that they hear from reliable sources I laugh. They have no idea what evidence is.


In any case, well done on the other matter.
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Postby Silly Walter » 01/06/09 02:32 PM

Tim Ellis wrote:What gets me is how the magic community usually "knows" what's going on but prefers to turn a blind eye rather and pretend it's not happening rather than do anything about it.


Very true. It almost gets to be a running joke amongst magicians as to who is doing what. Granted it isn't limited to the magic community but people should really watch who their kids are spending time with - regardless of how many magic shows the magician has done or how many books they have written.

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