SOUTH KINGSTOWN, R.I. (WPRI) — A former volunteer with the Boy Scouts who’s now facing sexual assault charges was brought into court for a brief hearing on Wednesday.
James Glawson, 74, of Exeter, has been held without bail since his arraignment on Friday. Court documents show he’s charged with four counts of felony sexual assault dating back to March 3, 2018, all of which involve an 18-year-old man who Glawson allegedly knew had mental disabilities.
Wednesday’s hearing was supposed to determine Glawson’s bail status going forward but that couldn’t be discussed since he doesn’t have an attorney. Glawson learned in court Wednesday that due to his financial situation, he doesn’t qualify for a public defender, and he said he didn’t know how to go about hiring a private attorney. He also claimed he’s had no access to a phone at the ACI, and said his family all lives out of state.
Judge Madeline Quirk gave Glawson until Friday to hire an attorney and return to court for a follow-up hearing.
Glawson was arrested last Thursday after the alleged assaults were brought to the attention of Rhode Island State Police by the Department of Children, Youth and Families (DCYF). Investigators were seen searching his Widow Sweets Road home throughout the day on Friday.
Police said Glawson was affiliated with the Boy Scouts from 1980-2018. Starting in 2012, he was an assistant Catholic chaplain and Eucharistic minister at St. John Bosco Chapel at Yawgoog Scout Reservation in Hopkinton.
He’s also affiliated with St. Bernard Church in North Kingstown and the Immaculate Conception Church in Westerly, according to police.
Police are still looking into the possibility of additional victims. Anyone who has information on the case or wishes to file a complaint against Glawson is asked to contact detectives at (401) 764-5346.