In a recent article by the Post Star, a parent of an alleged child sexual abuse victim from Brant Lake Camp says that parents had notified camp staff of their concerns about the counselor accused of the abuse, but the park failed to take action.
In July 2018, 51-year-old Brant Lake camp counselor Dylan Stoltz was arrested and charged with sexually abusing five boys at the camp. This led to a 27-count grand jury indictment and charges that Stoltz molested at least nine boys between ages 9 and 11 at the camp in recent summers. Stoltz was a longtime employee of the camp – working there for 33 years, since the age of 18. He was an elementary school teacher in the Hewlett-Woodmere School District on Long Island the rest of the year.
Soltz was fired in late June, almost immediately after camp administrators were notified of the allegations against him. The camp fired him before law enforcement was notified and Stoltz immediately asked for a lawyer after investigators contacted him. He is scheduled to go on trial February 4, 2019.
Authorities suspect that there may be additional victims. Anyone with information related to this case has been asked to contact New York State Police at (518)-745-1035.
Attorney contributor Laurence Banville works as a civil sexual assault survivors lawyer who continues to help victims of assault. We’ve asked him to weigh in with some thoughts on the legal options available to families affected by sexual abuse in summer camps:
Overnight summer camps have been a staple of American culture for generations. These camps can be positive environments where our kids can make new friends, learn new skills, and relax during their summer vacations. But tragically, like other positions that involve working with kids, sometimes sexual predators seek positions as camp counselors. When one of these predators sexually abuses children at the camp, there are many concerns to address.
Clearly, the needs of the victims must be attended to first. Law enforcement must be notified and the perpetrator must be prosecuted before he or she can hurt others. Additionally, it’s important to look at the owners of the camp and determine if they failed to keep their campers safe through negligence, such as failing to report previous allegations of sexual misconduct and allowing an accused counselor to continue working.
If you or your child was sexually abused at a summer camp and you’d like to learn more about your legal options, consider speaking with an experienced sexual abuse survivors lawyer.