Secret settlements should not be allowed. Sunlight is the best disinfectant. Public policy should protect victims of predatory behavior. I saw a good example on Live5News. An alleged nonprofit organization is keeping its identity secret after agreeing t0 settle a lawsuit. The lawsuit involved the injury of a child. Here is the background.
Jacop Hazlett is serving a 75-year prison sentence for molesting children at NewSpring Church, a North Charleston church. He was a volunteer at the church. A jury found Jacop Hazlett guilty of six charges in December 2019. He was convicted of multiple counts of criminal sexual conduct with a minor.
The victim was injured by a volunteer with a nonprofit organization listed as “XYZ Corporation”. This sham corporation legally does not exist in South Carolina. However, in the settlement, XYZ Corporation agreed to place money in a trust fund for the child until he turns 18.
Previous settlements involving the XYZ Corporation have centered on cases in which parents allege their children were molested by a volunteer. NewSpring Church was listed as a defendant but those documents were removed from public view after Live 5 News began asking questions.