There may be no worse thing to happen to a young child than to be the victim of sexual abuse. The psychological and physical ramifications of the despicable behavior can last for the rest of a child’s life. However, one way to take control of the situation is to seek medical help, if necessary, and legal support quickly.
Parents and other adults need to remember that a child who is the victim of sexual assault or abuse has been through a traumatic experience and may have significant difficulties dealing with the repercussions. Remember, too, that while patience is crucial in helping a young person cope, it is also important to keep in mind that there are statutes of limitations in place when it comes to holding a perpetrator criminally responsible.
Recently, a young 11-year-old girl was tricked into accompanying a 27-year-old male acquaintance across state lines when she agreed to act as the man’s translator at a hospital. Instead of going to the hospital for his phony stomach pains, the man reportedly took the girl into another state where he checked them both into a motel. After he sexually assaulted the young girl, the man dropped her back off at her home.
At home, the victim told her mother about the incident. Acting immediately, the mother then brought the young girl to the hospital where a rape test, which can medically confirm sexual contact or trauma, was performed. At that time, the young girl then revealed that the man had been sexually abusing her since she was 8 years old.
As is common in other situations, the young girl had been too afraid to tell anyone about the assaults because the man had punched her before and threatened to kill her and her family if she ever told someone.
The brave girl’s statements have resulted in a comprehensive investigation by various groups from Illinois and surrounding states. The man was arrested and charged with crossing state lines to engage in sexual acts with the young girl and aggravated sexual abuse of a child younger than 12. Besides the criminal charges he now faces, there may be civil damages awarded to the young victim.
Source: East Chicago Community, “E.C. man charged with crossing state lines to engage in sex with 11-year-old,” Jim Masters, Nov. 8, 2012
Chicago man arrested for aggravated sexual abuse of girl