Former Boy Scout Leader and Legislator Sentenced to 7 Years in Prison

kelseyA disgraced former NY State legislator and Boy Scout leader has been sentenced to the maximum 7 years in prison after being found guilty on May 12 on all counts of an indictment charging him with one count of first-degree sexual abuse and one count of first-degree attempted sexual assault, both felonies. Michael Kelsey also was indicted on misdemeanor counts of forcible touching and two counts of endangering the welfare of a child.

Prior to his conviction, Kelsey spent more than two decades as a scout and a leader in the Hudson Valley Council of the Boy Scouts of America.  He was also a rising star in Dutchess County politics and a county legislator. With his law degree, he assisted in local family adoptions. Through his business, Away Adventures, Kelsey planned kayaking and adventure trips with adults and kids.

During his criminal trial, Kelsey admitted breaking the Boy Scouts two-deep rule by sleeping next to children during camping trips and calling young boys on the phone.

Kelsey’s survivors had an opportunity to address the court during the sentencing phase and spoke of the pain and emotional trauma experienced as a result of the sexual abuse.

While the local Boy Scouts’ council stated that they took “swift action” in removing Kelsey after learning of the criminal allegations, they never contacted law enforcement authorities.

In imposing the prison sentence, presiding Judge Catena noted, Kelsey’s “total betrayal of trust, lack of any remorse or acknowledgement of wrongdoing and the harm done to the two boys”

In addition to his prison sentence, Kelsey was sentenced to 10 years of post-release supervision. He also will have to register as a sex offender. No-contact orders of protection were also issued in favor of the victims.


Dumas and Vaughn Attorneys at Law has law offices in Portland, Oregon and serves clients in Oregon, Washington, Idaho, and other states.

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