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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 98552 Find in a Library
Title: Assault Against Children - The Law and Its Enforcement (From Assault Against Chldren, P 99-115, 1985, John H Meier, ed. - See NCJ-98549)
Author(s): R D Willey
Date Published: 1985
Page Count: 17
Format: Document
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: A police officer discusses his perceptions of the child assault problem and argues that law enforcement agencies must remain active in the investigation and disposition of child assault cases by creating special child abuse units.
Abstract: In addition to mandates of the 14th amendment, law enforcement has a vested interest in the victims of child abuse, since many studies suggest a close relationship between childhood abuse and a propensity to adult violence. While law enforcement agencies cannot by themselves adequately address the problem of child assault, they can take steps to improve their performance or credibility as one entity within the service system. Much criticism leveled at law enforcement's handling of such cases can be eliminated by the establishment of specialized units staffed by highly trained investigators who are allowed maximum flexibility in their case dispositions. Case studies and a description of the Child Abuse Detail established by the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department in 1975 illustrate the procedures and effectiveness of such a unit. The author contends that the key to successful management of any child assault case lies in the infusion of both public and private sector resources acting in concert at earliest possible time. Excerpts from California's Child Abuse Reporting Law are included.
Index Term(s): California; Child abuse detection; Child abuse reporting; Police child abuse training; Police responsibilities
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