Wisconsin Department of Justice Child Maltreatment Fox Valley Technical College Certification Track
Crimes Against Children Names: battered child, child abuse, sexual abuse, child neglect and child maltreatment Each of these terms refers to either an intentional act or a failure to act that causes harm or the risk of harm to a child
***Child Abuse is About Power Children are taught to obey adults Adults are more cognitively developed than kids Manipulation Children are taught to trust adults Especially family, teachers, coaches, clergy..etc
****Child Abuse includes all ofthe following: Intentional or reckless infliction of physical injury Sexual intercourse or a person under the age of 16 Sexual exploitation of a juvenile
Parental Privilege ***Parents right to control his or her child. State statue 939.45(5) ***Allows reasonable discipline = what a reasonable person believes is necessary Who can claim Parental Privilege Parent, Stepparent, or Guardian Any other person legally responsible for the child’s welfare in a residential setting
Risk to Youth Sixty-four percent of sexual abuse survivors are depressed Childhood victimization increases a persons risk to commit violent crimes as an adult, including sexual violence and child abuse
Statistics According to the National Child Abuse and Neglect Data System, in 2008, the more than 3.7 million reports received, showed 772,000 children found to be victims of abuse and neglect. 71% of those children suffered from neglect, and 33% of the victims were less than four years of age. Nationally an estimated 1,740 children died of abuse or neglect in 2008. Of these, 80% were under age four, and 45% were less than one year old. National Clearing House on Child Abuse and Neglect Information; www.calib.com/nccanch
Wisconsin Stats In Wisconsin over 1,314,412 cases of possible abuse were reported in 2008, but only 5,787 were substantiated by the Department of Health and Family Services (DHFS). A case is substantiated when the allegation of maltreatment or risk of maltreatment was supported or founded by law or policy. A case is unsubstantiated when there is not sufficient evidence under State law to conclude or suspect that the child has been maltreated or is at risk of being maltreated.
On Scene ActionsPreserve the Scene Make sure an officer remains at the scene Look for and document infant care items in home Diagram the scene Photograph the scene Brief a supervisor Check all rooms, storage areas, floors, garbage, and laundry (dirty laundry and any laundry in the process of being cleaned) for evidence Document anything that appears out of place Get a medical release form signed
On Scene ActionsCollect Evidence Bedding, sheets where child slept Baby bottles, formula and other child food (opened and unopened) Articles of clothing Diapers Wash cloths and bibs Childs medications, including empty bottlesAt the Hospital ****Get information from hospital staff as to what they observed from family while in the room No privilege!
****Overall considerations…forany scene… Photograph everything Injuries, scene and anything else YOU feel is important Get statements from victim (if possible), caregiver, witnesses or anybody else YOU feel is important Get medical records No HIPPA
Wisconsin Mandatory Reporting Section 48.981(2) of the Wisconsin Statutes identifies specific professionals who are mandated to report child abuse and neglect ****A report is required if the reporting person has reason to suspect or reason to believe that a child seen in the course of professional duties has been abused, or neglected, or threatened with abuse or neglect, and if the person has reason to believe the threats will be carried out Every instance of child abuse or neglect must be reported no matter when it happened or where it happened ****However the perpetrator does not have the right to know who reported!
Who Needs to Report 48.981(2)All of the following professionals are mandated reporters: Medical Health Professionals School Teachers Coroner Social Workers Mental Health Professionals Physical Therapists Marriage and Family Therapists EMTs Administrators of Social Service Agencies Child Care Workers Occupational Therapists Police NOT PARENTS!Both child neglect and child abuse must be reported.
***Duty of Local Law-enforcement48.981 Immediately investigate if there is reason to believe the child’s health or safety is in immediate danger Take necessary action to protect the child If reason to do so, take custody of the child and deliver to an intake worker Refer the case to the DA’s office for criminal charges if necessary
****Time Limits for Reports/Investigations ***The law requires prompt reporting of any suspected child neglect or abuse. Within 12 hours (exclude Saturdays, Sundays, or holidays) of receiving a report, the sheriff or police department must refer the case to the appropriate county department. Similarly, within 12 hours of becoming aware of suspected or threatened abuse, the county child protection department must refer the case to the sheriff or police department Law enforcement and child protection services must coordinate the planning and execution of the investigation of the reported neglect or abuse (§48.981(3)).
***Neglect Most common form of abuse ***Examples Abandonment, lack of food, shelter, medical care
WI Neglect Stats. Causing Mental Harm to a Child - § 948.04 (Felony) Offender had temporary or permanent control of the child. Child suffered mental harm. Offender caused the mental harm. Offender caused such harm by conduct that demonstrated substantial disregard for the mental well being of the child. Child was under 18 years of age.
WI Neglect Stats. Abandonment of a Child - § 948.20 (Felony) Child was under the age of 18 years. Offender left child in a place where the child may have suffered because of neglect. (Neglect means to seriously endanger the health or safety of a child by failing to provide necessary care, food, clothing, medical or dental care or shelter.) Offender intended to leave child. Child was under the age of 18 years. Offender was responsible for the welfare of the child. Offender intentionally contributed to neglect of child. (Offender purposely contributed to neglect or was aware their action was practically certain to cause that result.)
WI Neglect Stats. Interference with Custody of a Child - § 948.31 (Felony) Child was under 18 years of age. Custodian had legal custody of child under a court order or judgment. Offender took away child from custodian without the consent of the custodian. Offender intentionally took child from custodian (and knew custodian had legal custody of child and did not give consent for child to be taken away). Offender took child with intent to deprive custodian of custody rights.
WI Neglect Stats. Contributing to the Delinquency of a Child - § 948.40 (Felony or Misdemeanor) Child was under 18 years of age. Offender intentionally encouraged or contributed to the delinquency of the child. (Delinquency is any violation of state criminal law by a child. It is not required that the child actually did commit a crime.)
Developmental Characteristicsof a Child (pg. 7 and 8) When you are investigating possible child neglect, one of the things you must assess is how the child compares to what is normal for that age. Child neglect tends to slow a child’s development. Yet there is a range of “normal” behaviors and abilities for each age as well. Pg. 7 and 8 will help you assess a child’s stage of development relative to the child’s age.
Child Neglect -The Scene Photo-documentation protocols Entire scene show what is and is not there refrigerator - open and closed cupboards - open and closed under beds, etc. garbage temperature baby bottles drugs
Investigating Physical Abuse Unlike neglect, physical abuse usually involves some injury to the child Observable evidence Three sub-sections of §948.03 of the Wisconsin Statutes are most commonly applied in cases involving physical abuse of a child
Whenever Investigating AbuseSafety and protection of child immediate medical attentionCrime scene management protocolsPhoto-documentation protocols injuries views scale(s) child’s height
Three Major Offenses Physical Abuse of a child - § 948.03 (2) (Felony) Any physical injury Injury inflicted on a child Injury inflicted on child intentionally Reckless Causation of Bodily Harm - § 948.03 (3) (Felony) Any physical injury Injury inflicted on a child Reckless causation of injury Failing to Act to Prevent Bodily Harm - § 948.03 (4) (a) (Felony) Caretaker or caregiver is aware of another who is causing or intends to cause injury to a child Caretaker or caregiver is able to intervene and prevent injury to child Caretaker or caregiver fails to take action to prevent injury or risk of injury
Bruising Bruises generally result from blunt force to the skin that breaks the capillaries under the skin and causes discoloration of the overlying skin -signs of deeper injury Generally accepted that bruising Cannot be accurately dated
Shaken Baby Syndrome Shaken Baby Syndrome, a form of non-accidental head injury, is caused by the violent shaking of a child One in four infants who are shaken dies as a result. Of those who survive, most suffer permanent injuries, ranging from mild learning disorders and behavior changes to mental and developmental retardation, blindness, hearing loss, seizures or a permanent vegetative state Victims generally are children from 0 - 4 years of age with the majority of victims being less then 6 months of age.
Shaken Baby Injuries General few symptoms Subdural hematoma (swelling), subarachnoid hemorrhage (bleeding) and diffuse axonal injury are types of brain injury indicative of Shaken Baby Syndrome. Retinal hemorrhage is bleeding behind the eyeball and is present in 70-90% of victims. Injury to brain tissue.
Who to INTERVIEW You will need to interview anyone who spent time with the child in the last 96 hour The statements must reflect the last 72 - 96 hours with the child Neighbors should also be interviewed later during a canvass of the area You should refer to the event as the "accident" and NEVER suggest or ask if the child was shaken. Develop a rapport with the caregiver and allow them to tell their story. Include any initial utterances, statements or explanations provided by caretaker in your report.
Questions Ask how compliance is obtained from the child. Is the child disciplined? How? What happens if the child cries nonstop? How do you cope? What are the childs developmental abilities? What is the childs normal schedule? How was this one different? Did anyone attempt to revive baby? Was there a change in the baby’s cry? Could child have struck a hard or soft object? If the caregiver admits to shaking the child, continue with your questioning and have the caregiver demonstration of the shaking and how the episode ended (was the child put down, thrown, dropped, etc.) Ask questions about the childs appearance and behavior after the episode ended. Document also what the caregiver did after the incident up until medical personnel received the child. Finally, ask the caregiver if anything like this has ever happened before.
Investigative Matters At the scene it is imperative to gather as much information as possible about the child and the last 24-48 hours of the childs care and behavior You must obtain and understand the medical information pertaining to injuries in order to ascertain whether or not the infant (who may be pulse-less non-breathing, seizing, or blue and barely breathing) may be a victim of child abuse
Sexual Abuse Sexual abuse of children is grossly underreported: of 775 adult survivors interviewed, only 20% told their parents of the abuse and 50% of those who reported were re-victimized. National Center on Child Abuse and Neglect Child sexual abuse cases are very difficult to investigate.
WI StatsSexual contact is defined in § 948.01(5) of the Wisconsin Statutes. For contact to be considered sexual, the offender must have acted with the intent to become sexually aroused or gratified, or to sexually degrade or humiliate the child. Sexual contact includes the following acts: intentional touching by the offender of the intimate parts of the child either directly or through the clothing. The touching can be done using any body part or any object, but it must be intentional touching. intentional touching of the offender by the child, if the offender intentionally caused or allowed the child to do that touching the intentional penile ejaculation of ejaculate or intentional emission of urine or feces by the defendant upon any part of the body of the child, clothed or unclothed
Important WI Stats.First Degree Sexual Assault of a Child - § 948.02(1) (Felony) Sexual intercourse or sexual contact. With a child under 13 years of ageSecond Degree Sexual Assault of a Child - § 948.02(2) (Felony) Sexual intercourse or sexual contact With a person who is at least 13 but not yet 16 years of ageSexual Intercourse with a Child Age 16 or Older - § 948.09 (Misdemeanor) Sexual intercourse With person who is not the defendant’s spouse and who is at least 16 but not yet 18 years of age
Important WI Stats.Repeated Acts of Sexual Assault of a Child - § 948.025 (Felony) Offender committed at least three sexual assaults of a child. Child was under the age of 16 at the time of each act of sexual intercourse or sexual contact. At least three of the assaults took place within a specified period of time.Sexual Assault of a Student by a School Instructional Staff Person - § 948.095 (Felony) Sexual contact or s sexual intercourse with person who is not the defendant’s spouse and who is at least 16 but not 18 years of age Child is enrolled as a student in school or school district Defendant is member of school staff of school or district in which child is a studentIncest with a Child - § 948.06 (Felony) Marriage, or sexual intercourse or sexual contact with a child the defendant knows is related by blood or adoption and relation is closer than 2nd cousin
Important WI Stats.Child Enticement - §948.07 (Felony) Offender caused child to go into a vehicle, building, room or secluded place With the intent to have sexual intercourse, sexual contact, have child engage in prostitution, expose a sex organ or cause child to expose sex organ, record the child engaging in sexually explicit conduct, cause bodily or mental harm to the child, or giving or selling a controlled substance to a child Child was under the age of 18Use of A Computer To Facilitate A Child Sex Crime - § 948.075 (Felony) Offender used a computerized communication system to communicate with an individual. Offender believed individual was under 16 years of age. Offender had intent to have sexual contact or intercourse with the individual. Offender did an act, in addition to using computerized communication system, to carry out the intent to have sexual contact or intercourse.
Important WI Stats.Exposing Genitals or Pubic Area - § 948.10 (Misdemeanor) Offender causes a child to expose genitals or pubic area Offender exposes genitals or pubic area to a child Purpose is for sexual arousal or sexual gratification Causing a Child to View or Listen to Sexual Activity - § 948.055 (Felony) Offender intentionally causes a child to view or listen to actual or simulated sexually explicit conduct, including sexual intercourse, bestiality, masturbation, sexual sadism or sexual masochistic abuse, including flagellation, torture or bondage, or lewd exhibition of intimate parts. With the intent of sexually arousing or gratifying the offender, or humiliating or degrading the child
Important WI Stats.Sexual Intercourse with a Child Age 16 or Older - § 948.09 (Misdemeanor) Offender had sexual intercourse with a child, not the offenders spouse. Child was under 18 years of age.Exposing a Child to Harmful Material - § 948.11 (Felony) Offender sold, rented, exhibited, played, distributed or loaned harmful material to a child. (Material depicts nudity, sexually explicit conduct, sadomasochistic abuse, physical torture, or brutality and it is harmful to children. Offender had knowledge of the character and content of the material. Child was under 18 years of age. Offender knew child was under 18.Possession of Child Pornography - § 948.12 (Felony) Offender possesses any undeveloped film, photographic negative, photograph, motion picture, videotape, or other recording. The recording showed a child engaged in sexually explicit conduct. Offender knew that the recording showed a person engaged in actual or simulated sexual activity. Offender knew person depicted is under 18 years of age.
Victims of Sexual Abuse Children of different ages react differently to abuse. Preschooler victims may show changes in their eating or sleeping behavior, have problems with bowel or bladder control, become aggressive or appear worried. School-aged victims may exhibit sexualized behaviors inappropriate for their age, such as fondling an adult’s genitalia, acting out sex play with older or younger children, engaging in sexual "play" while unclothed, masturbating in public. Adolescent victims may become chronic runaways, be brutal to younger children, show suicidal gestures or self-mutilation, fear certain adults or certain touches and be hostile or delinquent
Important to Remember Abusive adults have tremendous power over children, and use their position of power or authority to bribe, coerce or threaten the child to engage in inappropriate behaviors.
Sexual Abuse -The Victim Safety and protection multidisciplinary team resources removal Assess medical condition and arrange for immediate care forensic medical examination preventive treatment for diseases pregnancy collection of biological specimens for evidence imaging examinations
***Many times… Sexual abuse cases offer NO physical evidence DO NOT Repeatedly question the child Unsubstantiate the case because it is difficult to prove Simply close it out because of the lack of evidence DO Conduct good interviews with the perpetrator, witnesses, caretakers, school, family…etc Develop PC if possible
Reporters of Abuse The reporter is the child or adult who learned of the abuse from the child victim or who has observed child behaviors that cause suspicions of abuse. May come from a school teacher or counselor, an extended family member, a friend, etc. Determine motivation of reporter Revenge against other parent, divorce or custody issues Look for inconsistencies in reporter’s statement and attempt to corroborate the information
After the Report… Victim is confused and overwhelmed by the response Afraid of being separated, even from the perpetrator Feel guilty Motive was to get the abuse to stop, but not necessarily to sever the relationship with the offender Enjoy attention and affection, but want the sexual behaviors to stop
Offenders Intra-familial (member of the child’s family) Rules the family – strict discipline Family isolated from outside Overindulges the victim – “special relationship” Offender loses interest as child matures Preferential Child Molester Pedophile Gender and/or age preference Multiple victims Men with little or no sexual interest in people of their own age Prior arrests or investigations ****Have an excessive interest in children and can recognize a vulnerable child
What about age difference? Generally speaking if the age difference is 5 or more years, it is sexual abuse. Offenders are usually over the age of 13, but some have been as young as 10 years old. The younger the offender the more likely that they were a victim of abuse.
MO of the Child Molester Seduces the child Drugs, alcohol, gifts, attention and affection Seduces parents – “pillar of the community” Coaching sports, church leader, scout leader…etc Molester’s goal is to find a situation where they spend a night together and change clothing Offenders are very patient in order to gain the trust, and parent’s encourage time spent with the child Goal is always sexual gratification
Online Playground? Children can be at home interacting online with adults they believe to be children Pedophiles will exchange stories and photos with others like them Validates what they do They exchange tips and tricks How to avoid law enforcement as well They share their conquests
Substantiating the Crime Evidence can be difficult to locate Reported long after abuse took place Sometimes they report in adulthood Statute of Limitations 3 years for misdemeanors and 6 years for felonies – except murder Special time limits for physical and sexual abuse of children 26 years old – 45 years old of the victim Depending on the crime
Physical Evidence Forensic Medical Exam if the report was soon after the incident No biological evidence Injuries heal quickly in children Many times no injuries at all Interview victim, offender and anyone else connected with the child to corroborate the physical findings
Law Enforcement Response Dispatched to a home, school, hospital…etc Steps of investigation is dependent on the scene 1st Step – Interview RP and witnesses 2nd Step – Interview child, family, siblings CAC Interview? 3rd Step – collect evidence based on info 4th Step – Interrogate alleged perpetrator Offender will minimize what they have done Accuse child – “coming on to them” Manipulative – patience and persistence
CPS Investigate and protect the child Interview child and all family members Assess the child and any other family members for risk Physical safety, neglect or abuse CHIPS petition of the child needs protection and the family is unable to provide it Custody of the Court Services provided to the family Eventually returned to the family or long-term placement
Interviewing the Child Victim ****Do we need permission from parents to interview a child for the purposes of a child abuse investigation?
Child Interviews…see pgs 32-34Step Wise Interview TechniquesSetting****Do Build RapportListenDevelopmentally appropriate languageSupport the child – not in troubleChild’s eye levelDrawing or writing is goodNever use words that the child did not already use****Never use leading questionsDocument, Document and Document
***Recanting A child victim who says previous allegations of abuse were not the truth Children often recant Fear of retaliation Distrust you Confused or embarrassed Find out why Collect as much information and evidence as possible as it may be all you have for prosecution Pictures, video and documentation!
Missing Children Voluntary Parental Kidnapping Unknown Abductor/Stranger Abductor Unknown Missing ***It is not a crime if parents are unsure of the whereabouts of their child
Voluntary Escape abuse May be a loving home, but child leaves anyway Family doesn’t accept lifestyle and home is too much stress Wants to hang with friends and parents disapprove Often child returns in a few hours and parents should contact LE when they do Chronic runaways can be subject to a CHIPS petition; services and placement
Family KidnappingDivorced, separated and the non-custodial parent kidnaps the child ****First thing – Verify custody to validate a crime has taken placeOther family members can be offenders Grandparents Older siblings Taking – violate a custody order by taking child Keeping – violate order by not returning child 12 hr rule Parent suspects abuse Concealment – conceal to prevent return Flight – transport from the State Intent to Deprive Indefinitely – Affect custody indefinitely
Unknown Abductor/Stranger andUnknown Missing Unusual but extremely dangerous Bring resources from the State (DCI) and FBI Neighborhood canvass Evidence gathering Vehicle Information AMBER ALERT
LE Response – pg.37 Depends on: Child’s age Mental or developmental impairment Medical conditions Indications of foul play Age – Younger the child more danger Impairment – prone to accidental injury and victimization Medical – medication need or drug and alcohol abuse Foul Play – specific info child is in danger