News

Youth leader professes innocence

The former executive director of the Oak Harbor Boys and Girls Club is accused of inappropriately touching a teenaged girl, Oak Harbor police say.

Police arrested and charged Roosevelt Rumble, 47, of Oak Harbor in Oak Harbor Municipal Court Sept. 13 with fourth degree assault with sexual motivation, a gross misdemeanor charge.

Rumble’s attorney, Terry Smith of Oak Harbor, said his client “vehemently denies the charges.”

“Mr. Rumble would like to say that he has worked with youth for 24 years,” Smith said. “He has been an outstanding member of our community. He asked that he not be tried in the court of public opinion. He vehemently denies these charges. He will enter a not guilty plea and put his trust in the American legal system, and above all, in the Lord.”

Detective Carl Seim said Rumble is accused of assaulting the girl more than one time. The girl is now 17 years old, but the alleged assaults occurred when she was 16, Seim said.

Rumble resigned from the Boys and Girls Club last year to become the pastor at the New Life Missionary Baptist Church. Rumble is no longer employed at the church.

Rumble has long been an advocate for children in the community. He started volunteering in 1996 with the Partnership with Youth, which later became the Boys and Girls Club. He helped organize events and was eventually named to the group’s board.

Then, in 1999, Rumble took the position of director. Prior to that, he enjoyed a career in the Navy.

You can reach News-Times reporter Jessie Stensland at jstensland@whidbeynewstimes.com or call 675-6611.

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