Former Roseville Boy Scouts leader takes plea deal after attorney general’s investigation

By: Brian Wells | Roseville-Eastpointe Eastsider | Published November 9, 2022




ROSEVILLE — A New York man who served as a Boy Scouts leader in Roseville, who was the first person to face charges as the result of an ongoing investigation by the Michigan attorney general, accepted a plea deal in court.

Mark Chapman, 51, of New York, formerly of Roseville, pleaded guilty at a hearing Oct. 31 in front of Macomb County Circuit Court Judge Kathryn Viviano.

Chapman originally was charged with eight counts of second-degree criminal sexual conduct and two counts of first-degree criminal sexual conduct in two separate cases. The charges alleged that Chapman assaulted two victims while being involved in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and the Boy Scouts of America.

The first case makes up six of the second-degree charges. The abuse began in 2000, when the victim was approximately 13 years old, the attorney general alleged in a press release sent out in March. It continued until he was 17 years old and a senior in high school, according to the press release. The incidents occurred at the victim’s father’s house, Chapman’s house and at the local church, the Department of Attorney General stated in the press release.

The second case involved a family member who was around 11 years old, the press release states. The abuse went on for years and often revolved around times that were designated as special opportunities for Chapman to spend time with the boy, the attorney general alleges. When asked about the location of the abuse, a spokesperson from the attorney general’s office declined to comment.

“As a rule, the department does not provide details regarding victims of sexual assault,” Amber McCann, communications director for the Michigan Department of Attorney General, said in an email.

As part of a plea deal, Chapman pleaded guilty in the second case to one count of first-degree criminal sexual conduct, which carries a sentence of 12 to 20 years in prison, a lifetime registration on the state’s sex offender registry and electronic monitoring. He also pleaded guilty in the first case to one count of second-degree criminal sexual conduct, which carries a sentence of 10-15 years in prison. The sentences will be served concurrently.

McCann said the plea agreement was reached after Attorney General Dana Nessel’s department spoke with the victims.

“The department consulted with the victims and they were satisfied by the plea agreement,” she said in an email.

In a prepared statement, Nessel said that securing justice for the survivors of abuse is one of her top priorities.

“Regardless (of) how much time has passed, or how difficult the circumstances of a case may be, I am committed to seeing abusers held accountable for their crimes,” she said. “Allegations made against adults in the Boy Scouts of America are wide-ranging and my department continues to review information and evidence to pursue charges against those who used their positions of authority to harm children.”

Chapman’s attorney, Samuel Bennett, said Chapman was taking responsibility for his actions from nearly 20 years ago.

“He has taken responsibility for his actions and will serve a minimum of 12 years in the Michigan Department of Corrections,” Bennett said in a prepared statement. “As a victim of sexual abuse himself as a child, Mr. Chapman understands the impact this has on the victims in this case. He has expressed deep remorse for his actions, as he has done since he was extradited from New York.”

Bennett also thanked Nessel’s office for understanding the factors presented in the case and dismissing a more serious charge.

Chapman is scheduled to be sentenced for both cases at 8:30 a.m. Dec. 14.

Anyone with information about the Boy Scouts of America that might help investigators is asked to call the tip line at (844) 324-3374 between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. Mondays through Fridays. Tips can be left anonymously.