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Moose official in Ohio accused of sexual abuse

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By The Associated Press
Thursday, Dec. 13, 2012, 9:50 p.m.
 

COLUMBUS, Ohio — The top official at the Loyal Order of Moose and Moose International fraternal organizations molested a boy more than 30 years ago in Ohio and Louisiana, and years later he was twice investigated for sexual misconduct with children, according to a lawsuit filed on Thursday.

The complaint, by North Carolina physician Jason Peck, says William Airey, chief executive officer and director general of Moose International and the Loyal Order of Moose in Aurora, Ill., began grooming him to abuse him sexually in 1980, when he was 12.

The lawsuit says Airey was a member of a Moose lodge in suburban Columbus, where he took Peck to Moose-related functions.

Peck's attorney, Konrad Kircher, said Peck has agreed to go public with his allegations.

Airey, 71, was celebrating his 50th wedding anniversary on a trip on Thursday and wasn't available to comment, said Moose spokesman Kurt Wehrmeister.

“The fraternity is shocked by this allegation as this is not the Bill Airey we know,” Wehrmeister said in a statement.

Peck, a psychiatrist and sleep-care physician, decided to come forth after news broke of the sexual abuse allegations against former Penn State assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky, said Kircher. Sandusky was convicted in June 2012 of abusing several boys.

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