[Editor’s Note: We received this from a Maine Wing Member. Thank you for your contribution.]
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