By AuxBeacon News Staff
[Editor’s Note: We received this from a Maine Wing Member. Thank you for your contribution.]
Update: In 2018, Higgins was appointed as the CAP National Communications Education and Training Officer by the CAP National Commander, Maj Gen Mark Smith.
CAP Lt Col Scott D. Higgins of the 58th Composite Squadron of Maine Wing is under CAP investigation for alleged sexual harassment and stolen valor. He has not been suspended and is working directly with cadets. Below is a discussion of parents and friends concerned about having their children involved with this man.
Cathy: Ramy , have you come across this man at all in your dealings with CAP?
My daughter is considering joining and I was just poking around and discovered this man, [Lt Col] Scott Higgins is being investigated for sexual harassment. I don’t really want her around him. I don’t know why he still deals with the kids if he’s being accused of anything sexual. He really should be removed in my opinion.
How safe do you feel your daughter is at CAP? Has she ever had to deal with him?
I’m going to do some more digging, but you should should maybe do some checking around too.
Ramy: She was at the encampment he led this summer. I am pretty sure that he is the Director of Cadet Activities for the Maine Wing. I remember him making claims of being a Navy Seal, but running around in flip flops with his BDU pants. Would you dig farther?
Ramy:[Redacted] Doesn’t he do stuff with Wreathes Across America?
Butch: Cathy, as you know I was around a lot of sexual predators when I worked in corrections. I have met this man and I am not comfortable with Samantha ever being alone with him again. I have been asked to join CAP many times. This is one of the reasons I don’t.
Emmyah: I went looking about the SEAL stuff…
Ramy: Chris have you seen these?
Emmyah: And this…from SOCNET
Joleen: I have confirmed that he was in fact NEVER a Navy Seal and Stolen Valor is aware as they are the ones who told me.
Jay: If the Civil Air Patrol at the State Level, Region or National is hiding any facts of any member I would suggest to have local State, Federal representatives to look further in this matter and have a good reputable news investigator dig further. Unfortunately, sometimes even in our US military or other organization we need to do this to prevent cover ups or any incident to this organizations most valuable assets ” Any Youth”.
Kathy: Don’t CAP do background checks on these people? How do they handle complaints of sexual harassment? Do they bury it like the military does? It’s my understanding that he has been under investigation for a while now. These women gain nothing by reporting this kind of behavior. Why isn’t it being taken seriously? Why aren’t the women and children being protected from this kind of harassment? What happens when he gets a little more brave and rapes someone’s child, someone’s mother? This makes me physically sick!
Kathy: This makes me so angry! This behavior affects the victim for their lifetime!
Stephanie: Just looking at his picture makes me sick.
Ramy: You and I met him in April at the Maine Sportsman Event in Augusta. He was all over trying to make friends with the J-man.
Stephanie: I had a gut feeling about him back then, and it was right.
Butch: Jay, it is my understanding that he has been accused of sexual harassment at least twice. It is also my understanding that the first incident was covered up, while the second is being investigated. Kathy, as I understand it CAP procedures for investigations of this type use the same or similar methods as those used by the military. As you know, these procedures are often used to minimize sexual harassment and MST [Military Sexual Trauma] charges under the guise of “procedure” and “unit moral.”
I’ve seen this happen time and again in the work we do with Internity. I am not a fan of institutional/organizational cover-ups, nor am I a fan of gag orders. The damage it does to those who have been wronged lasts a lifetime, and discourages others from reporting similar incidents. It it is wrong, plain and simple.
Butch: Sadly, many predators fly under the radar. They are dumb like foxes, charismatic, and likable by the good old boys, and are experts at harassing victims who report. I saw many people who seemed very likable when I worked corrections, and yet were some of the worst predators in the facility. We’ve seen time and again with MST cases in the military that the “powers that be” find it to be easier to kick out those who report a problem than it is address it, especially if it is a high ranking person. It is a sad reality, and one that we fight regularly with the work we do.
Doc: If he continues his claims of being anything SOCOM I have a feeling he’s going to have a firm talking to that he won’t like. It’s a small community for a reason and Stolen Valor posers have no room in the brotherhood. Scott, if you’re reading this, know you’ve gained the wrong kind of publicity from the wrong kind of folks.
Butch: As I mentioned in another post, I’ve met a number of special forces guys over the years. What I’ve seen of this guy is nothing like them, nothing.
Rob: met him one time and he got real antsy when I started using the dreaded knife-hand to punctuate my response to the horseshit flowing from his mouth.
Butch: I’ve met a number of special forces guys over the years, and what I’ve seen of this person is nothing like that.
Ramy: If memory serves, you were a well respected investigator in the Army. You would know the line of bull if you heard it.
Cathy: This is from his LinkedIn page. On here, he says he’s been with CAP for 47 years. Previous comments show his claim of being a SEAL, but I’d like to know when he found the time for all that training if he was busy for nearly 5 decades straight with CAP. Also, he makes no mention of the Navy at all on here.
Ramy: Cathy, this is from Lt Col Wayne Merritt and Capt Janet Driensky’s pages. They are good buddies with Lt Col Higgins in the CAP. From the context of the photos, I guess he was a National CAP Speaker in Tennessee this year.
Link to Part 2 – Alleged Stolen Valor – Coming Soon
Cathy: I’m not concerned with what he’s wearing, or what ribbons he has on in what picture. I am concerned with the fact that he has been accused of sexual harassment, possibly more than once, and appears to be left in charge of teenagers while he is under investigation.
Mike: Who is investigating? would it not it be better to talk to them then Facebook? What if this is not true? How to you fix this?
Butch: Apparently you aren’t following the rest of the conversation Mike….
Mike: It is the conversation that is the issue. What did he do, who did he do it to and who is investigating it.
Butch: For someone who doesn’t know anyone involved, you seem quite interested…go read the rest of the conversation…the answers you seek are already there.
Mike: They are not.. You would jumped to corrected me if they were. If the man is guilty get rid of him. The post here are speculation. If you were accused of harassment or some you cared about would you want to litigated here? If you want answers go to whoever is investigating this and get the facts. Seek the truth.
Butch: What, specifically, do you feel is speculation? That his former employer advertised his services as a former Navy Seal? The screen capture shows that pretty clearly, and is not speculation. Do you feel that saying he is under investigation is speculation? I’ll go on record and say that I know for fact that he is being investigated by CAP, and that I have personally been told he was investigated once before and it was covered up. That’s not speculation. Most everything else I’ve posted is about the similarities in how the military and CAP handle this sort of situation. That’s not speculation.
Others have posted their thoughts, just like what you see in the comments section of the newspaper. If you don’t like it, why are you here reading and discussing it yourself? You sound much more like someone with a vested interest than “someone looking in from the outside” as you claim to be…
Mike: I’m sorry I’ve lost interest continue your gossip without me
Butch: Looks like Mike Sellar deleted all of his comments…interesting…
Cathy: Mike Sellar, just wondering if you could provide your DD214’s from each branch? Sorry, I’m just a very suspicious person. When I start hearing claims of multiple branches, I start wondering.
Cathy: Butch the comments are still there….I think he just blocked you lol.
Butch: Ahhh…that’s actually quite funny. He says he was in CAP as a youth, so I suspect he may know more than he is saying. I wonder if he can read this since he blocked me? Does that mean he can’t see the screen capture of the regs he referred to above but didn’t read before he enlightened us as to what they say?
Ramy: @Mike Sellar, based on the timeline given, there are several inconsistencies that have given me pause to now question your credibility as a person and as an LEO in the Waterville PD. I too, would like to see your DD-214’s and awards, medals, and citations. It is interesting that you list multiple services here, but you have no record of Army service in your court case where you sued for being fired because you were “substandard” in radio operations, even though you were a radioman for 6 years. I have screen captured this conversation in it’s entirety and will be sending it to Stolen Valor if you do not respond. Doc and Rob, is this another fishy to expose?
It is readily apparent that you do know Mr Higgins or some of Higgin’s friends. You slipped up on your timeline and the fact that you joined the Navy after high school. No way you could have worn Army ribbons on your uniform. Want to fess up as being a troll and claiming stolen valor now? Link
Mike: As an outsider and not know knowing anyone involved, this reads as a witch hunt.
Cathy: Not meant to be a “witch hunt”, more like what’s up with this guy? Does anyone know him? I kind of don’t want my daughter around creeps, that’s all. If he is, he shouldn’t be around teenagers.
Ramy: Cathy, the 411 on Mike Sellar is that he is “high strung” and is no longer employed by the Waterville PD. People who know him PM’d us and filled us in. It fits the profile that he is an “arm chair commando” and no, he is not a neutral outsider. He has skin in this game, and this is what the problem is…. I did a “soft” information pull and he was sued for excessive force against a woman and her daughter on the Waterville PD. So, he, unfortunately is part of this widespread problem of misogyny.
Sandra: Feeling “creepy” is enough to limit any time spent with the person, but actual verbal or physical? For a minor, report it to local law enforcement ASAP. An adult, first through CAP channels, and if necessary, start up the CAP/USAF chain. Document, document and document
The “war stories” that is harder since the SCOTUS gutted the “Stolen Valor Act.” Besides “bragging” is this man receiving any monetary benefits from his “war stories”? Someone may want to do an FOIA or a verification of his military service. It does take time, and each branch has different rules for how to do it. There should have been as a minimum a background check on the person since he is around minors. Different groups use different private companies to conduct it, and often it is no more than a police records check, and maybe if the person handles funds, a credit check.
Ramy: The loophole to this system is that if a person joined 40+ years ago, they have not had recent checks. Renewals do not require references.
Butch: Another problem is that offenders frequently “get away with it” many times before getting caught, IF they ever do. That means no record to find…
Sandra: What?? For Girl Scouts, for Church Group and for another group I volunteer with we have to have them and have updates done!
Butch: “Sexual Harassment is Alarmingly High
– 160,500 service members (1 in 4 women, 1 in 14 men) faced severe and persistent sexual harassment or gender discrimination in 2014.
– 60% of victims were harassed by someone in their chain of command.
Good Order and Discipline at Risk
– Service members who are sexually harassed are at significantly greater risk of sexual assault.
– Harassment was often mishandled by the chain of command: 44% of victims were encouraged to drop the issue and 41% said the person to whom they reported took no action.”
Sandra: There is something wrong with a group when you can have adult members with minors, and the adults have never had a background check. Just the liability alone.
Erin: I’ve never been in the military, but it doesn’t sound like the guy has a clue what part of the military he’s been in, seeing all the different labels he’s had and differences in time frames. Any complaint or suggestion of someone in power that has been accused of sexual harassment not once but at least twice, is someone to be cautious around. I had planned on joining CAP, but he seems too sketchy with too many friends in all the right places to make me want to be that close to him. And I’m an adult. And with titles that he has you’d never know what he’s done. Probably what allows him to not have a background check
Jay: I am trying to figure out if this member has on going complaints of this nature 1. Do he still holds a position near cadets 2. Is still in a Command position 3. Question is he being Investigated by Region or State? If Region isn’t Maine in the same Region as the former Wing CC now Region CC [Col Dan LeClair], if so, can this be a conflict of interest. How long has this investigation take?
Butch: As far as I know, he is still in his position. CAP regs suggest something different should have happened, but then that’s what happens in military MST situations as well. Many of the upper ranks in CAP are former military. And as I understand it, the person investigating him is actually from Maine.
Jay: By the sound of this I am starting to feel violations of process, cover up, conflicts of interests, and if someone digs deeper to the ” WHYS” their maybe more major issues. Yes I have investigative experience and had extensive training dealing with these type of issues. If the CAP Leadership as an Org is failing to do what is IAW CAP Regulations and Bylaws
The next step is where the CAP gets its funding source USAF, local States in some cases and Congress. I suggest as many members that have valid credible complaints of this nature go as a force and request assistance from applicable Representatives, Senators and request guidance from the USAF IG Pentagon Office since CAP is now part of the total force. Ensure all steps have been taken to include notifying the Chain of Command up to National of the negligence and conflicts to go outside the channels.
Butch: Jay, the problem with the way CAP handles these things is that everyone is placed under a gag order, so no one knows what’s going on. In other words, everyone feels like “they’re the only one” who has said something, again much like the way the military handles this type of investigation. I truly wonder if there are more who would come forward, IF they knew they weren’t alone…
Jay: I will not be surprised to see that their are more possible incidents.
Butch: Interesting…I got a message from someone who says they’ve seen Mike Sellar at various CAP training exercises…thought as much… Again, this sort of response is very much like what happens in MST cases in the military. People who report are asked if they’re sure they want to put themselves through the ordeal, because the accused is a good standing individual that everyone likes. Victim blaming is the norm, and then they mention unit cohesion and how much a story like this getting out will hurt the service, etc., etc. Not much of a surprise really…
Butch: Jay, it’s very difficult to see who is command [Col James Jordan] of what in the Maine Wing of CAP: http://www.mewg.cap.gov/home
I’m glad this story and others on Dan LeClair are back up. His advance was halted. Will they now turn to the dead-end of Barry Melton and Little Dickie Greenwood?
It astonishes me that, at this point, CAP members STILL recommend going through official CAP and AF channels with complaints. Talk about pissing to windward! That is going to be utterly futile. There are CRIMES being reported here. As CAP-USAF under Col Tyynismaa has stated in a document posted elsewhere on this site, neither the CAP nor the USAF has authority to investigate–much less to take action–against crime. If you know something is going on, do your best to document it and go to local law enforcement. The USAF is under the uniform code of military justice and does not have jurisdiction over civilian or civilian criminal matters. Or go to the media or BOTH, which is probably the most effective thing to do.
Someone was falsly accused of harassment and the cop that investigated told several of us leaders that it would be wise to do everything you could to protect yourselfs. He recommended a very small digital recorder and now I carry one in my pocket, turned on, during all squaddron meetings and especially with cadets and parents. i do not tell them i am recording but i do just in case. If some cadet gets mad at me for not promoting them i don’t want rumors to effect my family and job.
I’m just amazed at the response of most of the people on this site. In our wing, our wing commander, 2bd a senior just for being accused of molesting a cadet. (The good is that the wing is zealous in protecting children, but the bad thing is that the senior member was never convicted of a crime…). So, I believe for the good of CAP, you use your chain of command, but like school teachers, report all incidents to the local authorities, too. Whether CAP covers anything up or not, local authorities usually investigate sexual assault seriously, swiftly, and judiciously.
There are two or more CAP reg or law violations in this story and even more across this entire website.
Wing Commanders often violate CAP regulations for their own advantage. This may seem trivial to you, but they receive monies from federal and state taxes and membership dues and therefore must be accountable for fair play across the geography of their states.
Sometimes, as the author of the new CAP Cult story points out, an accused member is required for some other sleazeball’s advancement. So complaints against that member are buried. We see proof of that happening during the period leading up to the Total Farce Announcement. Hundreds of complaints in the ECIM system were summarily dismissed or buried and Investigating Officers and Inspector Generals, like Merle Starr, were excommunicated. The Air Force is duly embarrassed over this.
Many CAP members are unsuccessful bling and paper addicts with mail-order degrees and other phony qualifications.
CAP aviators are a mixed bag as well. The older ones, like the two idiots who crashed an airplane at Fallbrook Air Park recently in my CAWG, perform horribly on check-rides and have psychotic temper-tantrums against younger check-pilots. All of this is covered-up from your view.
Read more of the stories here and you will get a better understanding of the public and private outrage against Civil Air Patrol.
It is about time that this information on Dan LeClair has come to light. But wait, there is more. So, stay tuned.
Any investigation completed at the Regional Level is subject to favoritism and bias, since Higgins promoted LeClair and LeClair is now the Regional Commander. National booted this investigation back to the Regional level knowing there was a conflict. I can already see that LeClair will “ignore” evidence and will find Higgins not guilty. Oh wait, I think he already has done that… when given the proof of Higgins’ stolen valor as being a “former Navy Seal.” Anyone in the SEAL community want to chime in about why posers claim to be SEALS?
I have no idea about this guy. I hope it is not true for the sake of the Cadets. But the scary thing, some of those in charge of CAP use the Cadet Protection Policy as a political weapon from time to time and not as a measure to keep youth safe. If they have a political ax to grind against a member all they have to do is level a charge of violation of the Cadet Protection Policy. The member gets “labeled” a predator and procedurally gets kicked out of CAP. I know of members that have brought fraud, waste and abuse complaints to the IG only to be retaliated against with a CPP charge. Meanwhile guys like Governale are able to prey on Cadets because the “Officers” are too busy playing tin soldiers.
I read this. Someone should contact National Civil Air Patrol and the Air Force and ask why this is being covered up by the Maine Wing Commander [James Jordan], the Northeast Region Commander (friend of Higgins) [Dan LeClair], and the National IG [Tom Kettell].
The Air Force is very unlikely to do anything.
Back when I first joined CAP, yes, that could have happened.
Now that the CAP and Air Force are officially “separate,” they mostly let CAP go on its merry way (including mistreating members) unless someone really raises a stink. About the only thing they keep CAP on a tight leash over is the wear of the uniform!
I concur. The CAP-USAF is a worthless pile of horse dung.
Why haven’t those involved contacted the local Police or FBI by now? Doesn’t anyone care about the victims? CAP corporate will bury this if this is not reported to the proper authorities.
The FBI is another worthless pile of horse dung. The whole system is corrupt.
My son wanted to join the CAP ever since he went to a open house at the local airport. I looked more into it tonight and was about to let him join. After finding this website and seeing what happens in the cap, I will NEVER ever allow him to join. You people should be ashamed of yourselves to allow predators to harm our children. How can you people sleep at night as you allow this to happen. What if these sickos harmed your kids????
Don’t you just love the direction Crooked Vazquez has taken the CAP?