Fort Riley, Kansas



Five Boy Scouts help discover crime scene

By Suet Lee-Growney | 1ST INF. DIV. POST | January 29, 2018

     Five Boy Scouts from Troop 41 in Junction City, Kansas, were at Fort Hays State University in Hays, Kansas, Nov. 4, 2017 for a merit badge class when they discovered a crime scene under a walking bridge during their break.

     Jett Harter, 13, son of retired Sgt. 1st Class Robert Harter, said they came across numerous identity cards, wallets and purses belonging to various individuals in the partially iced-over creek when they were out exploring the nearby woods at Fort Hays State University.

     “There was still more evidence out there, but we couldn’t get it all,” Jett said.

     When they realized something was awry from the multiple IDs from various people, George McVay, 11, son of Command Sgt. Maj. William McVay, Fort Riley Warrior Transition Battalion senior noncommissioned officer, said he was thrilled to put his scouting values to use and his first instinct was to report their findings to their scoutmaster, Pete Paras.

     “I was like ‘we should really take this to Mr. Pete,’” George said. “I almost felt excited that we found something.”

    After receiving this information, Paras reported it to the Fort Hays State University Police Department and the Scouts directed law enforcement to where the crime scene was. For discovering the evidence and reporting it, each Scout received a certificate for their efforts and challenge coin from the university police in Junction City Dec. 19, 2017.

     Paras said he was impressed with his Scouts for doing what they were taught by following the Scout law and oath learned during their Monday meetings.

    “These (Scouts), we teach them every Monday morals, values, ethics, trustworthiness and so they’re doing exactly what they’ve been learning,” Paras said. “And that’s why the (Fort Hays State University) chief of police was happy the Boy Scouts found the wallets and purses because otherwise someone else wouldn’t have turned it in.”

      George’s father said as Boy Scouts, they learn importance of responsibility and that Scout’s honor to work not only through their honesty, but they chose to spend their spare time.

     “Values came shining through,” McVay said. “They had an extra hour and a half, and instead of just pulling out their phones and playing some video games, they decided to go exploring — hiking — which is a very Scouting oriented thing to do. Then their values showed when they came across something that was obviously not right. Rather than ignoring it, they brought it to someone’s attention.”

      Retired Staff Sgt. Baldwin Fisher, father of one of the five Boy Scouts, Bryson Fisher, said he was proud of his son for doing the right thing.

      “(Bryson) had the presence of mind not to ignore it and let somebody know so that further steps can be taken,” Fisher said.

      Jett’s mother, Tiffany Harter, said it was an interesting chain of events seeing how it happened during Jett’s first Scouting event.

      “Well, how can you beat that because it was his very first day of being a Boy Scout,” she said. “I was really proud of him.”


Tag Scouting