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Former youth coach indicted for serial sex abuse of boys

By Harriet McLeod

CHARLESTON, South Carolina (Reuters) - A former South Carolina school principal and youth coach was indicted Tuesday on 22 counts of sexually molesting boys, including some at a military college summer camp, five years after the college investigated the man but took no action.

The indictment was the latest of a string of sex abuse accusations involving university or youth coaches across the country since November.

A grand jury indicted Louis "Skip" ReVille for molesting and showing obscene materials to 15 boys in Charleston County, South Carolina, Ninth Circuit Solicitor Scarlett Wilson announced on Tuesday.

The 22 counts include criminal sexual conduct with a child, lewd acts on a child, and disseminating obscene material.

ReVille was arrested last October on child sex charges in Mount Pleasant, South Carolina where he was a school principal. He had also worked as a children's sports coach at several schools and community recreation centers, police said.

"As you can see with the number of victims that were involved, the number of activities that were involved, this has been an intense investigation," Wilson said at a news conference.

ReVille's lawyer did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

ReVille's case first drew national attention when The Citadel announced shortly after the Penn State University sex abuse scandal erupted in November, that it had erred in failing to tell police about the allegations against ReVille in 2007.

Among other sex abuse cases, a grand jury in November indicted a former Penn State football coach for serial sexual abuse of boys. A former Syracuse University basketball coach was accused of sexually abusing ballboys, and the former president of the Amateur Athletic Union (AAU) was accused of abusing youth basketball players years ago.

All of the coaches have declared their innocence.

In 2007, a former Citadel summer camper said that five years earlier, when he was 14, ReVille invited him and another camper to his room, showed them pornography on his computer, and they masturbated.

ReVille, a graduate of The Citadel, worked as a counselor at the school's camp for three summers between 2001 and 2003.

The Citadel released documents on its internal investigation and the college's president expressed regret that school officials had not reported the allegations to police.

"I am saddened and sickened that someone so close has betrayed our trust," Citadel President John W. Rosa told a news conference in November.

Wilson said Tuesday that The Citadel had no legal obligation to report the suspected inappropriate behavior and that its officials would not be charged with failure to report it.

"The Citadel is encouraged by the progress that's been made in the investigation and it will continue to cooperate completely in any ongoing investigation," Dawes Cooke, attorney for the college, said on Tuesday.

In 2006, the school paid a $3.8 million judgment in a civil suit filed by five former campers who said they were sexually assaulted by Marine officer and camp counselor Michael Arpaio. Arpaio was court-martialed for the crimes by the U.S. Marine Corps and served time in Charleston's Navy Brig.

(Editing by Greg McCune)

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