What happens to kids during childhood, shapes who they become as adults. Today we say it’s time to change the way we represent, treat, and protect our children in America.
All kids deserve a good chance at life! It starts in childhood.
Child Sex Abuse is a type of maltreatment, violation, and exploitation that refers to the involvement of the child in sexual activity to provide sexual gratification or financial benefit to the perpetrator.
It includes contact for sexual purposes, molestation, statutory rape, prostitution, pornography, exposure, incest, or other sexually exploitative activities.
1 in 5 girls and 1 in 20 boys will be sexually abused before they turn 18 years old.
Over 65,000 children were sexually abused in 2019.
8.6 % of reported child abuse cases were ‘sexual’ abuse.
34% of people who sexually abuse a child are family members.
Here are some more statistics about Child Sex Abuse and the wide-ranging and very serious physical and mental consequences to the victims:
12.3% of girls were age 10 or younger at the time of their first rape/victimization, and 30% of girls were between the ages of 11 and 17.
27.8% of boys were age 10 or younger at the time of their first rape/victimization.
96% of people who sexually abuse children are male, and 76.8% of people who sexually abuse children are adults.
325,000 children are at risk of becoming victims of commercial child sexual exploitation each year.
Caregiver alcohol or drug abuse is a child abuse risk factor putting kids at much higher risk for being abused.
The average age at which girls first become victims of prostitution is 12 to 14 years old, and the average age for boys is 11 to 13 years old.
Child sexual abuse exploits and degrades children and can cause serious damage to cognitive, social, and emotional development of a child.
As a society, we have a collective responsibility to prevent child sexual abuse.
To accomplish this, we must initiate and support services and policies that enhance children’s development, health and safety and we must advocate for policies and programs to help meet the basic needs of children and families.
Civil and Criminal Lawsuits involving sexual abuse have gained much-needed attention over the past few years and have brought this Child Sex Abuse epidemic to much better light.
More prominent among these have been the civil and criminal lawsuits against the Catholic Church and some of its defrocked clergy; Jeffrey Epstein; the University of Southern California; Harvey Weinstein; Michigan State University; Larry Nassar; Bill Cosby; and Jerry Sandusky
Victims of sexual assault have finally started to see their perpetrators face justice. Sexual predators are now being prosecuted, and victims compensated. This national attention hopefully will lead to changes that will help prevent future abuse from occurring.
Here are some of the most recent cases to hold these sexual predators accountable in the “PREDATORS HALL OF SHAME”.
Catholic Dioceses — Catholic dioceses have paid more than $3.8 billion to settle claims of more than 8,600 victims of sexual assault by members of the Catholic clergy.
Over many decades, priests and lay members of religious orders within the Roman Catholic Church sexually abused children.
Rather than report the abuse to law enforcement, the Catholic Church reassigned the perpetrators to other parishes where they were able to continue contact with youth.
Jeffrey Epstein — On July 6, 2019, Jeffrey Epstein was arrested in New York and charged by federal prosecutors with engaging in sexual trafficking of minors
in which he paid girls as young as 14 to have sex with him at his Upper East Side home and his estate in Palm Beach.
In 2008, Epstein entered a non-prosecution deal with federal prosecutors in Miami involving similar allegations of sexual trafficking of minors.
Epstein was allowed to plead guilty to two state prostitution charges and served just 13 months in prison.
While in prison, he was permitted to leave the prison 6-days per week for up to 12-hours per day to attend to his businesses.
University of Southern California — On May 29, 2018, the Los Angeles Police Department began investigating complaints from 52 women who were patients of Dr. George Tyndall. Dr. Tyndall was a gynecologist at the University of Southern California (USC) for 26 years.
Law enforcement stated that the gynecological exams conducted by Tyndall went beyond normal and acceptable medical practice. The Los Angeles police are working with prosecutors to determine what crimes were committed by Tyndall. Tyndall examined more than 10,000 students at USC during the period 1990 through 2016.
In 2016, Cindy Gilbert, a senior nurse, reported Tyndall to USC’s rape crisis center. A few days later, she discovered photographs of patients’ genitalia in Tyndall’s office. The photographs went back as far as the 1990s.
On October 19, 2018, USC announced that it agreed to a $215 million settlement in a federal class action lawsuit filed on behalf of women treated by George Tyndall during his tenure at USC.
Harvey Weinstein — On May 25, 2018, entertainment mogul Harvey Weinstein was arrested in New York, and charged with rape, sex abuse, and sexual misconduct. The criminal charges arise from the statements of two women.
More than 80 women, however, have come forward and accused Weinstein of sexual harassment, verbal abuse, and/or rape. The lead prosecutor in the case, stated “that Weinstein used his money, power and position to lure young women into situations where he was able to violate them sexually.”
Weinstein was convicted in New York, and sentenced to 23 years in prison for rape and sexual abuse. He currently faces another trial in Los Angeles, CA
Michigan State University — On May 16, 2018, Michigan State University (MSU) reached a $500 million settlement with 332 victims of Larry Nassar.
Larry Nassar sexually assaulted women in his role as a USA Gymnastics national team doctor and as an osteopathic physician at MSU. This settlement covers women abused by Nassar, even women who have not yet come forward to tell their stories. Additionally, victims of Nassar still have claims against U.S.A. Gymnastics, the United States Olympic Committee, and others.
Larry Nassar — As of February 2018, Larry Nassar has plead guilty to 10 counts of sexual assault on a minor. He was sentenced to 300 years in prison. When Nassar was arrested in December 2016, law enforcement found 37,000 images of child pornography and a video of Nassar molesting underage girls.
Bill Cosby — On April 26, 2018, entertainer Bill Cosby was found guilty of three counts of aggravated indecent assault for drugging and sexually assaulting Andrea Constand.
During trial, six witnesses testified how Cosby drugged them in situations that occurred from the early 1980s until 2004. More than 60 women have come forward to describe similar behavior Cosby forced on them.
Jerry Sandusky — On June 22, 2012, Jerry Sandusky, a former assistant football coach at Penn State University, was found guilty of eight counts of involuntary deviate sexual intercourse, seven counts of indecent assault, one count of criminal intent to commit indecent assault, and nine counts of unlawful contact with minors. He was sentenced to 60 years in prison.
Sandusky had been charged with 52 counts of sexual abuse of young boys during the period 1994 to 2009. He met his victims through The Second Mile, a non-profit charity he founded that served Pennsylvania’s underprivileged and at-risk youth.
Penn State University — As of November 2017, Penn State University had paid $100 million in settlements because of Jerry Sandusky sexually assaulting more than 30 boys over a 15-year period.
These sexual assaults occurred in part because of privileges and access Sandusky received as an assistant football coach at Penn State. The university also paid a $60 million fine to the N.C.A.A. Additionally, Penn State president Graham Spanier, was convicted of child endangerment.
Boy Scouts of America — In April 2010, an Oregon jury awarded $18.5 million to a thirty-eight-year-old man who was sexually abused by his volunteer scout leader when he was 12.
The evidence showed the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) knew assistant Scoutmaster Timur Dykes had abused children but allowed him to remain as a volunteer and to have continued contact with adolescents.
As part of the trial, it was revealed that in the 1920s BSA implemented an internal “Red Flag” system to identify Scout Leaders considered “ineligible” to hold positions as Scout Leaders.
Documents involving individuals suspected of child sexual abuse were kept secret and became part of the BSA’s “Perversion Files.” BSA identified many thousands of BSA scout leaders who were placed in the Perversion Files as potential pedophiles. Yet, many of these were allowed continued access to boy scouts.
Child molesters come from all economic backgrounds, geographic areas and include every ethnicity, race and creed. The sole characteristic all child molesters share is having thoughts about being sexual with children, and acting on those thoughts. These individuals actively seek access to children and the opportunity to be alone with them.
Also, contrary to “Stranger Danger” warnings, child molesters are rarely strangers; at least 90% of sexually abused children are abused by someone the child and/or family knows, someone in the child’s immediate or extended family, or someone close to the family.
In this Insider Exclusive Network TV Special, “AMERICA’S CHILD SEX ABUSE CRISIS – What You Need to Know”, our news team visits with Michael Fiumara, Founder and Partner, at the Fiumara & Milligan law firm in Santa Rosa, whose law firm has successfully pursued and won significant compensation in multiple Child Sex Abuse cases against the Catholic Church and for victims of sexual abuse.
They handle sexual abuse, assault, and harassment cases that occur from the church, employment, school, athletics, high-profile individuals, the Boy Scouts, and other organized social groups.
He will discuss:
- Who can bring a lawsuit in California for sexual abuse?
- AB-218: What It Means for Survivors of Child Sex Abuse
- How do you prove a molestation case?
- Can you sue a teacher for sexual abuse?
- How common is molestation of children by priests?
- Why do priests molest children?
- How long do you have to file a claim?
- How is each Case story different and how do you convey that to a jury?
- What is a true commitment to people?
How has the law firm made a difference in the lives of your clients?
As Michael has often said…… “the problem of Child Sex Abuse is much more widespread than most Americans are willing to admit. …….
When sex-abuse cases dominate headlines, a familiar pattern often emerges. If it took place at a large organization — be it a church, a large state university or a group such as USA Gymnastics — misconduct is often covered up in hopes of saving the institution’s reputation, and the money that accompanies it.
Michael has earned the highest respect from citizens and lawyers alike…. as one of the best Trial lawyers in California. He has seen many innocent & hard-working people become victims of these institutions.
He understands that Sexual Abuse is one of the most serious, enduring, and divisive human rights violations in the United States. The problem is not just in California …BUT nationwide….AND its nature is institutionalized.
And because of that…. He is driven to fight for people who had been harmed by the willful or negligent actions of others. His goals…… Not ONLY To get Justice for his clients…
But to ensure that these Child Sex Predators are brought to justice, and the Institutions who helped cover up their horrific crimes are exposed, and just compensation is awarded to each and every victim through the American civil legal system.
You can reach Michael Fiumara @ Fiumara and Milligan PC, https://fiumara.com/santa-rosa/ and 707-571-8600