Sexual Abuse & Assault Victims
If you are visiting our sexual abuse page, we want you to know you are being proactive – you are taking steps to understanding what has happened, and what can possibly happen in the near future.
Sexual abuse can be devastating, and may have a lifelong effect on the victim and the victim’s family. In this case, it could be yourself. In many cases, the victim is a child or a vulnerable adult, and the perpetrator is someone in a position of trust or power over the victim.
In that situation, the victim has the right to hold the individuals and the organization involved accountable for the abuse.
Cases of sexual abuse or assault are very sensitive in nature, and an experienced attorney can help victims and their families protect their legal interests. If you or someone you know has been a victim of sexual abuse, this page will provide more information, including facts and links to related information.
It’s Not Your Fault
It is not your fault. Whether you feel you were manipulated, drank too much or trusted someone who turned out to be a criminal, it is not and will never be your fault. However, having feelings of guilt is common, and it is okay to feel this way now. Yet, speaking with those who have experience with sexual abuse may help you. While we are “attorneys,” we are often called “counselors at law.” We can help, and you will have confidentiality.
If you need to speak with a lawyer, contacting the Liberty Law is 100% free and confidential. We are bound by the attorney/client privacy privilege, allowing for an open conversation to tell your story. If you are ready to begin a conversation, our contact information is available here. Even if you are not interested in taking legal action, we can assist you with resources to fit your needs, such as where to get counseling.
Sexual Abuse Stats
Tragically, sexual abuse is not uncommon. Studies show that about 33% of all girls and a 20% of all boys will become victims of sexual abuse or sexual assault by the time they reach the age of 18. Moreover, studies show that perpetrators rarely victimize just one person—there is usually a number of people who fall prey over time.
After decades of research, it has been shown that sexual assault and abuse victims react differently to the abuse. Many immediately contact the police or tell a family member. Others withdraw or change their behavior, and don’t recognize the reason for years. Victims can face lifelong pain, anger and uncertainty about what happened to them.
Forms of Abuse & Assault
Sexual abuse or assault could include rape or attempted rape, but can also include inappropriate touching or kissing, as well as, other forced sexual behaviors that occur against the will of the victim, or in which the victim was unable to consent because of age.
Some of the sad situations in which sexual abuse or assault can occur include patients in hospitals or nursing homes who are abused by staff members, schools or daycare centers whose employees prey on children and churches whose clergy or staff members commit abuse. In those situations, the hospital, nursing home, school, daycare center or church can be held legally responsible for the abuse, particularly when there is notice that abuse has occurred previously. The organization may have failed to conduct sufficient background checks or maintained unsafe conditions, which resulted in abuse. Worse, there are cases where the organizations ratified the awful conduct by having it reported, and failed to take any steps to correct the misconduct.
Sexual Assault in School
We have often spoken with parents or guardians who have learned that their child has suffered from sexual abuse in school. While this is not uncommon throughout the country, as recently as April 10th 2017, breaking news revealed sexual abuse occurring at a West Contra Costa Unified School District (WCCUSD) employee’s residence in Pinole, just outside of Richmond, CA.
Sexual abuse in schools can be prevented with proper screenings, parent and student education and swift justice. If you are a parent of a child who has been sexually assaulted in school, you may choose to take legal action. We can help you understand the rights of your family in a confidential discussion to learn the facts of the case, and hear your story. Consultations are free, and 100% confidential from an attorney experienced in sexual abuse cases involving perpetrators within the school system. Call attorney Micha Liberty at (510) 645-1000 to learn more about your legal rights, or contact us by clicking here.
Child Sexual Abuse & Assault
Sexual abuse can have dramatic effects on children and the disabled. Children may undergo permanent behavioral changes as a result of the abuse, particularly if the situation is handled incorrectly. Victims of sexual abuse are much more likely to suffer from depression, to use alcohol, to attempt or commit suicide and to abuse drugs than people who haven’t been sexually abused.
Justice For Abuse & Assault
Many sexual abuse victims choose not to pursue legal claims against their attackers. However, other victims view a lawsuit as a chance to pursue legal justice against the perpetrator. In some cases, the abuse can be simple to prove, particularly if it occurred recently and if there is evidence, such as physical evidence from the victim or the crime scene. In other cases, the abuse may have occurred years ago, and the case could be more difficult to prove.
If You’ve Been The Victim of Sexual Abuse in Oakland, Contact Liberty Law
If you are in the San Francisco area and you have been the victim of sexual abuse or a sexual assault, you should investigate your legal rights against the perpetrator. Most likely, the abuse has caused you months or years of pain, and you have a right to make the individual responsible face both criminal and civil penalties for that behavior.
At Liberty Law, Micha Star Liberty believes in speaking up for and protecting the rights of the victims of sexual abuse. If you have been abused, call her at 415-896-1000 or 510-645-1000. She will help you with your case, and give you the sensitivity and compassion you deserve. Call today.