WOBURN -- Forty Boy Scouts from local communities received their Crime Prevention Merit Badge after spending an evening with Middlesex District Attorney Marian Ryan learning about preventing crime in their communities, staying safe on the Internet and standing up against bullying.

"These young men are model citizens who really care about their school and their community," said District Attorney Ryan, who led the program for youth, Scout leaders and parents. "By introducing them to the important work of law enforcement -- especially our efforts to prevent crime -- we can empower these young men to be ambassadors for creating a safe, positive community where they live."

The scouts, who ranged in age from 11 to 17, were from the following communities: Lowell, Chelmsford, Billerica, Dunstable, Tewksbury, Ayer, Dracut and Westford.

The Crime Prevention program, held Jan. 9 at the Middlesex District Attorney's Office in Woburn, included discussion of the costs of criminal conduct, the impact of crime on society, and simple steps that every Scout and school-aged youth can take to protect themselves from cyber-crimes, bullying, stalking, and abuse.

"Middlesex District Attorney Ryan's Crime Prevention Merit Badge workshop provided a rare opportunity for Middlesex County Boy Scouts to learn the materials first hand from experts in the field of criminal prosecution and crime prevention," said Charles Boddy, troop committee member.


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"The Scouts, parents, and leaders were grateful that the prosecutors took their personal time to demonstrate their roles in the criminal process, and, most important, to demonstrate their engagement in Middlesex County communities to build relationships and both educate and protect the public."

The presentation to the local scouts was part of the office's commitment to youth safety, violence prevention and intervention initiatives. MDAO staff, under the leadership of Ryan, partner with community groups, educators, business owners, medical professionals, social service providers, and law enforcement officers to address a variety of public safety issues.