Sexual abuse of a child refers to the maltreatment and involvement of the child under the age of 18 in a sexual activity to provide sexual gratification or financial benefit to the perpetrator, including contacts for sexual purposes, molestation, statutory rape, prostitution, pornography, exposure, incest, or other sexually exploitative activities.
Below are some relevant national statistics:
- 25% of girls are sexually abused before the age of 18;
- 16% of boys are sexually abused before the age of 18;
- Approximately 39 million survivors of childhood sexual abuse exist in the U.S. today;
- Nearly 40% of victims are abused by a family member;
- Another 50% of victims are abused by someone outside the family whom is known and trusted;
- Approximately 40% are abused by older or larger children whom they know;
- Approximately 10% are abused by strangers;
- Nearly 50% of all victims of forcible sodomy, sexual assault with an object, and forcible fondling are children under 12;
- An average serial child molester may have as many as 400 victims in his lifetime.
The family members and society in general also suffer from the victimization of sexually abused children in numerous and negative ways. For example, over 75% of serial rapists report they were sexually abused as a child and over 50% of women in prison were sexually abused as children.
Researchers have also reported that child abuse victims are also likelier to suffer personal failures such as business failures and bankruptcy and suffer from reckless behavior choices which may lead to physical injuries and trauma.
Child sex abuse cases can be brought by the parents of the abused child or an adult can bring a claim from sexual abuse suffered as a child. Many child abuse victims suppress their memories of the abuse and therefore do not discover their abuse until later in life. In the state of Florida, from the moment the memories of the abuse are unsuppressed and discovered, you have 4 years from this point to file suit.
Depending on the circumstances and facts surrounding the sexual abuse case, a school, church, mental or medical institution, foster home facility, disability school, childcare center, youth camp, landlord or other entity may also be found negligent and liable for failure to protect the child from the abuse. In other incidents, parents have been held liable for the sexual abuse acts of their own children against that of a minor. Homeowners or car insurance liability may compensate the sexually abused victim if the abuse or assault took place in the perpetrator's home or car.
The types of sexual abuse cases can be wide and varied, and can include child abuse at the hands of various perpetrators including:
- Archdiocese Members
- Boy Scout Leaders
- Daycare Workers
- Nursing Home Staff
- Store Employees
- School Staff
The impact of childhood sexual abuse has on the lives of its victims is profound. Victims have a much higher chance of suffering from any one of the following problems later in life:
- Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
- School Problems
- Major Depression
- Eating Disorders
- Drug Use
- Alcohol Abuse
- Substance Abuse
- Psychiatric Disorders
- Suicidal Thoughts
- Attempted Suicide
- Violent Tendencies
- Teenage Pregnancy
- Inappropriate Sexual Behaviors
You can reach Miami Personal Injury Lawyer J.P. Gonzalez-Sirgo by dialing his direct number at (786) 272-5841, calling the main office at (305) 461-1095, or Toll Free at 1 (866) 71-CLAIM or email Attorney Gonzalez-Sirgo directly at [email protected].