Demanding Accountability for Child Abuse
Although criminal charges against an offender can bring some sense of justice to victims of sexual abuse or child abuse, the results of a criminal trial often provide little or no direct relief to the victims and their families.
The child abuse and sexual abuse attorneys at the Davis Law Group understand how physical and emotional trauma can negatively impact everyday life. To recover from these hardships, survivors of sexual abuse or rape may bring a civil lawsuit against a person or entity that could have prevented the crime from ever occurring.
Even if there are no criminal charges filed or if the crime was years ago, sexual abuse victims may still have an opportunity to file a legal claim against the negligent party or parties.
Victims of sexual abuse or child abuse may bring a civil legal claim or lawsuit against anyone who was in a position to prevent or stop the abuse from happening. Examples include claims against the government (Department of Social and Health Services or Department of Corrections), a daycare provider, a school, a church or religious organization, a nursing home or a hospital.
Each year more than two hundred thousand individuals become the victims of sexual assault. And 54% of assaults or abuses are not reported to police.
Every year 3.3 million reports of child abuse are made in the United States involving 6 million children. Many are abused by parents, caregivers, or other adults such as teachers or clergy.
What is Child Sexual Abuse?
According to the American Psychological Association (APA), sexual abuse is defined as any unwanted sexual activity brought on by a perpetrator through the use of force or threats, or through taking advantage of a victim who is unable to give consent.
In addition to physical trauma, victims of sexual abuse typically experience both short-term and long-term emotional trauma. Examples of emotional trauma in victims of sexual abuse include moderate to extreme anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), paranoia and isolation. This is especially true when children become the victims of sexual abuse or rape.
Overall, it is estimated that children are roughly three times more likely to be victims of rape or sexual abuse than adults are. And while every state in the U.S. has some form of legislation that requires the reporting of child sexual abuse, the reality is that a significant amount of these crimes go unreported. In fact, the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN) estimates that only 46 out of every 100 cases of sexual abuse or rape are reported to police.
Negligence in Sexual Abuse and Rape of a Child
Sexual exploitation involves manipulation by a person who is in a position of power and uses that position to leverage sexual activity. Often times, sexual abuse stems from a person in a position of power over the victim. Examples of sexual exploitation include:
- Sexual abuse involving a school teacher and student, or a person with a similar position of authority over a student.
- Children in foster homes, protective services or similar environments in which the children are abused while under the care of licensed adults.
- Children who are abused while attending summer camps or other extended activities, such as the Boy Scouts, day care, youth sports leagues, etc.
- Children or adults who have been admitted to a medical care facility and abused by a healthcare professional or while under the supervision of healthcare professionals.
- Children or adults who have been abused by a member of the Catholic clergy.
We Hold Child Abusers Accountable
If you or a loved one has been the victim of this horrible crime then you can seek financial compensation for the physical and emotional injuries that you have suffered. Contact the attorneys at Davis Law Group at 206-727-7000 for a free confidential consultation.