Crime Victim Law Blog

Gymnastics doctor accused of molestation guilty of child porn

Almost a year ago, we wrote about the Indianapolis Star’s exposé on USA Gymnastics. The large children's gymnastics organization mishandled allegations by gymnasts who were victims of sexual assault. You can read more about that story in our 2016 post.

The good news is that prosecutors were also paying attention to the story.

Three East Coast prep schools admit sexual misconduct by staff

We want what's best for our kids. As parents, we try to give our kids a good education, have them engage in extracurricular activities and may encourage them in a spiritual upbringing.

That is why child sexual abuse is so horrifying. Instead of a positive, nurturing environment, children must spend years coping with the wrongs inflicted upon them.

Sexual abuse in nursing homes

Approximately 10 percent of the elderly population in America has experienced abuse in some form. When we think about preventing elder abuse, most consider ways to combat physical abuse, emotional abuse and financial exploitation. Rarely discussed is sexual abuse, which is nonetheless an extensive problem plaguing nursing home facilities nationwide.

The weakest are most vulnerable

Sexual assault awareness and prevention required year-round

Sexual Assault Awareness Month and the National Child Abuse Prevention Month are both in April. Hopefully, by now you have been able to read about or participate in activities designed to help assault and abuse victims overcome obstacles and help make the U.S. a safer place for all. Throughout the U.S., large demonstrations occurred that gathered women, men and children together to combat sexual assault and abuse.

Awareness is increasing, but the fight is nowhere near over

Hotel may be legally responsible for allowing sex crimes to occur

In March 2017, a victim of sexual trafficking sued the hotel where the illegal activities took place under a 2014 Pennsylvania statute. While there have been suits filed against individuals under this law, the civil suit against the hotel is the first of its kind and it could open the door for victims of sex crimes to receive damages from businesses such as hotels or strip clubs that ignore these problems in their establishments. 

Pennsylvania Senate extends child sexual abuse victim rights

It can take years for victims of childhood sexual abuse to be able to speak out about their experience. Child sexual abuse survivors often need to spend time healing and in therapy. However, child abuse survivors are currently barred from bringing a civil lawsuit against their abuser 12 years after turning 18.

Child victim advocates have long been promoting a change to this law. A bill introduced on January 30, 2017, aimed to do just that. The bill passed unanimously just three days later, in early February.

Attorney general investigating Lackawanna County Prison for sexual abuse

The Pennsylvania attorney general's office will begin a criminal investigation of the Lackawanna County Prison. Several former prisoners have alleged instances of sexual abuse and harassment by staff at the prison, both while they were incarcerated and during work release and probation. They filed a civil lawsuit in 2015 naming 50 people as responsible for the abuse and a subsequent cover-up.

Usually, the District Attorney's office would be responsible for the criminal investigation. However, Lackawanna County requires the DA to be on the board of the Lackawanna County Prison. In order to avoid a conflict of interest, therefore, the investigation will be headed to the Pennsylvania's Attorney General's office.

Pro cyclist provides example of overcoming sexual abuse

Children who undergo sexual abuse may struggle to heal after being victimized. The path to recovery is different for every victim, but examples of victims who have overcome this type of attack can help.

The examples of those who overcome this abuse can help for a number of reasons. First, they show that the victim is not alone. Others have gone through similar atrocities and not only survived, but were able to do amazing things with their lives.

One such story was recently shared in an article by The Huffington Post. The article shares the story of a professional cyclist who was the victim of sexual abuse when she was a teenager. The young woman explains how her road to recovery was difficult, how she has struggled with eating disorders and depression. She also explains how she is happy to share her story "in order to help others recover from similar ordeals."

Feds conclude investigation, issue fines in Penn State scandal

The Sandusky scandal is far from over. Feds recently concluded an investigation that dug into whether or not Penn State followed laws designed to help keep our youth safe while at educational institutions.

Ultimately, the feds have concluded that Penn State did not meet these obligations. As such, the iconic institution is facing fines of over $2 million.

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