Assistant scoutmaster charged with sexually abusing boy, 12

This photo provided by the Nassau County Police shows Jonathan Spohrer of Bellmore, N.Y. Police say the Boy Scouts of America assistant scoutmaster has been arrested for sexually abusing a 12-year-old boy at several scout retreats and meetings. (Nassau County Police via AP)

NORTH BELLMORE, N.Y. (AP) — An assistant scoutmaster on Long Island has been charged with sexually abusing a 12-year-old boy at several Boy Scouts of America retreats and meetings.

Nassau County police arrested 26-year-old Jonathan Spohrer at his home in North Bellmore on Thursday after an extensive investigation, the department said.

Police said Spohrer abused the boy during Boy Scouts retreats at several locations in New York state from January through November of 2018.

Spohrer was arraigned Friday on a second-degree charge of sexual conduct against a child. He pleaded not guilty and was released on bail.

Spohrer's attorney, Joseph Carbone Jr., said his client denies the allegations. "We look forward to vigorously defending these allegations in court and have faith in the legal system which presumes the innocence of the accused," Carbone said Saturday.

Chris Coscia, CEO of the Theodore Roosevelt Council of the Boy Scouts, said the organization is "shocked and disgusted" at the alleged behavior.

"Upon learning of these reports, we removed this individual and prohibited him from any future participation in our programs," Coscia said in a statement. He said the Scouts have a "multi-layered process of safeguards" to prevent abuse.

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