O’Fallon Cub Scout den leader accused of sex assault of child

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ST. CHARLES COUNTY, Mo. - The St. Charles County Prosecuting Attorney's Office charged a Cub Scout den leader with having sex with a juvenile.

According to a spokesperson for the O'Fallon Police Department, the family of an 8-year-old boy contacted authorities on the evening of October 13 to report the incident.

The victim told police the incident occurred earlier that day, between 2 p.m. and 3 p.m., at a home in the 700 block of Little Oaks Drive in O'Fallon.

The victim said he was in the basement with Matthew Baker playing a board game. Baker allegedly pulled the boy's pants down and performed oral sex on the child.

Investigators contacted Baker to ask about the incident. Baker confirmed he and the boy were in the basement playing the board game, but when police asked Baker if there was any chance his DNA might be found on the boy's genitals, Baker said he wasn't sure and wanted to consult with an attorney before answering any additional questions or providing a DNA sample of his own.

Prosecutors charged Baker, 48, with statutory sodomy or attempted statutory sodomy with a person under the age of 12. He was jailed and eventually released after posting a $50,000 cash-only bond.

Officials at the Boy Scouts of America St. Louis office referred Fox 2/KPLR 11 to the national headquarters. Baker said he underwent background checks and was never with a Cub Scout alone. He said he planned to resign his den leader post in the Cub Scouts.

Jessica Trost, the principal at Twin Chimneys Elementary School, sent the following letter home to parents on Monday:

Dear Parents,

Late this afternoon I received a copy of a letter from the Boy Scouts of America. It states that Matt Baker, a parent leader with Den 986, has been arrested for inappropriate contact with a minor. I can tell you his only contact with our school were his Boy Scout activities. I knew you would want to have this information. If you have questions or concerns, please contact the O’Fallon Police Department.

Baker’s wife said her husband is a good man.

"I have to believe my husband,” she said.

For their part, the Greater St. Louis Area Council of the Boy Scouts of America issued its own statement Monday afternoon:

“The behavior included in these allegations is abhorrent and runs counter to everything for which the Boy Scouts of America stands. Upon learning of these reports, we took immediate action to remove this individual and prohibit him from any future participation in our programs.

“Nothing is more important than the safety of our youth members. We seek to prevent child abuse through comprehensive policies and procedures to serve as barriers to abuse. These include a thorough screening process for adult leaders and staff, criminal background checks, requiring two or more adult leaders be present with youth at all times during Scouting activities, and the prompt mandatory reporting of any allegation or suspicion of abuse.

“Anyone with any information on potential abuse should contact authorities to ensure the safety of our youth, in and out of Scouting.”

A police spokesperson said investigators are unaware of any additional victims. However, they're asking anyone with information about other potential witnesses or victims to contact the O'Fallon Police Department at 636-240-3200 or 636-379-5659.

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