Broader public awareness of the troubling facts about child sex abuse has led to better preventive efforts and a decreased rate of reported incidents, but one of the most difficult things for any victim to do is report an incident of sexual abuse or molestation. Most incidents are perpetrated by a person the child knows well, and incidents go unreported because the child trusts the perpetrator. Some studies have estimated that between 15 and 25 percent of women and between 5 and 15 percent of men in North America were sexually abused as children.
According to the National Data Archive on Child Abuse and Neglect, 8.6 children per 10,000 reported being sexually abused in 2010. Abuse numbers have decreased by about 62 percent since 1990, when the rate of reported abuse was 23 children per 10,000. However, the 2010 rate still reflects more than 63,000 sexually abused children across the U.S. in 2010, and those are only the children that reported abuse. Other studies estimate the number of sexually abused children to be closer to half a million annually.
Prosecution of offenders, child advocacy centers, training and education, and special policing offer significant deterrents, but more can be done.
At Winer, McKenna & Burritt, LLP, we are strong advocates for the safety of children. Through aggressive litigation of molestation cases, our lawyers compassionately serve the best interests of people who have suffered abuse throughout California. Whether the victim of molestation is under the age of 18 or the abuse is reported several years after the fact, legal options may be available.
Call our offices in Oakland, San Francisco or Los Angeles today at (510) 433-1000 to schedule a free initial consultation with an attorney.
We Pursue the Maximum Compensation for Your Child
Schools are trusted to provide safe learning environments for children. Day care providers are licensed by the state and must adhere to strict standards of care, quality control and health measures, whether it is a day care center or day care provided out of someone’s home. However, school districts and day care providers are found liable for child sexual abuse and molestation every year. Teachers, counselors, coaches, other employees, parents and neighbors may fall under liability of the school or day care as long as the perpetrator is known or should have been known to be a danger to children.
Our partner attorneys have more than 60 years of combined legal experience litigating cases in which children and young adults have suffered from depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), physical injury, long-term psychological trauma and a tendency toward victimization in adulthood.
We build persuasive and effective cases on behalf of molestation victims and their families by:
- Examining criminal backgrounds, employee performance reviews and complaints
- Obtaining witness testimony
- Collaborating with expert witnesses in child psychology and health care
- Establishing the credibility of the victim
- Proving liability of the school or day care
- Proving damages sustained by the plaintiff
Four Young Boys Sexually Molested By Male Elementary School Teacher
Plaintiffs were sexually abused by their fourth grade teacher. The perpetrator taught at the defendant school district from 1997 to 1999, during which time he molested two of the plaintiffs. In June 1999, the teacher left the school district and gained employment at another in September 1999. In January 2000, several boys in his fourth grade class complained of improper touching by the teacher.
The county sheriff’s department ultimately arrested the teacher for child sexual abuse. He was convicted and sentenced to 24 years in prison in 2002.
It was the plaintiffs’ contention that the school district reached a secret deal with the teacher: if he resigned quietly, the district would provide him with a positive letter of recommendation and verbal recommendations. The teacher then used the recommendations to become hired at another school district, where he sexually abused the four other boys in his class.
Thus, the school district was negligent in its supervision and retention of the teacher, and it committed fraud by providing false written and verbal recommendations for the teacher after forcing him to resign in the wake of numerous complaints about inappropriate behavior.
While an associate with a previous law firm, attorney Kelli Burritt helped to litigate this case and obtain significant results for these victims.
Result: $6.8 million
Winer, McKenna & Burritt, LLP | Berkeley Day Care Molestation Lawyers
Contact us at (510) 433-1000 toll free to schedule a free initial consultation with a lawyer.
Each case we handle is fully advance financed by the firm. You pay nothing unless we obtain a favorable verdict or settlement in your case because we work on a contingency fee basis only.