A scout leader from the Hudson Valley is accused of "periodic unlawful sexual conduct" with a minor he met on a dating app. More victims are possible.

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On Wednesday, members from the Ulster County Sheriff's Office reported the arrest of a Town of Ulster man on sexual abuse-related charges.

Late Monday, deputies began investigating a report alleging Douglas R. Whitaker, 68, of Ruby, engaged in periodic unlawful sexual conduct with a juvenile since the spring of 2020, when the victim was under seventeen years old.

Whitaker is alleged to have met the juvenile via an online dating application.

Dating app or site in mobile phone screen. Man swiping and liking profiles on relationship site or application. Single guy using smartphone to find love, partner and girlfriend.
Tero Vesalainen

Whitaker is the Senior District Executive and Camp Director at Rip Van Winkle Council, according to Facebook.

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The Rip Van Winkle Council is a scout program in Ulster and Greene counties for boys and girls from kindergarten through the age of 21.


"Serving the youth of Ulster and Greene Counties. Cub Scout Family Program for boys & girls kindergarten through 5th grade. Scouts BSA Troops for Boys or Girls 11 years old through 18. Career Exploring programs for boys and girls 14 - 21 years of age," Rip Van Winkle Council writes on Facebook.

Whitaker is the former camp director at Camp Tri-Mount Scout Reservation, according to Facebook.

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Getty Images

A further investigation, including the execution of a search warrant at Whitaker's home, culminated with his arrest late Tuesday.

Whitaker was charged with the two counts of criminal sexual act, felonies and endangering the welfare of a child, a misdemeanor. He was arraigned in the Town of Ulster Court and remanded to the Ulster County Jail in lieu of $75,000 cash bail, $150,000 partially secured bond, or $300,000 fully secured bond.

An Order of Protection was also issued on behalf of the victim.

"The investigation is continuing and additional charges may be filed. Anyone with information related to this case is asked to contact us at 845-338-3640," the Ulster County Sheriff's Office stated. "We were assisted in this investigation by the Ulster County Family and Child Advocacy Center and Ulster County District Attorney's Office."

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