What Should Be Done When a Child Is Molested by a Predator or Sex Offender?

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In Florida, children continue to be victims of sex offenders and child predators. When a child is abused or neglected in such a manner,there may be three or more types of proceedings that result:

Criminal Proceedings. The local sherifff’s office, police department, investigators, Department of Children and Familiies and / of State Attorney’s office typically coordinate efforts and information regarding potential criminal investigation and proseuction of the crimes committed against the child. If there is probable cause combined with a number of other considerations, then the State Attorney will make the decision as to a arrest and criminal prosecution of the alleged sex offender and / or child predator.

Administrative / Licensing Proceedings. If the incident(s) took place at a school, day care facility, or other location subject to government licensure or oversight, there may be an administrative proceeding or licensing proceeding against the individual and / or facility. The administrative / licensing investigation may produce information and documentation that can be used for the criminal and / or civil proceeding.

Civil Proceedings. The parents of the child victim may be able to pursue a civil claim or case against the sex offender / child predator and / or the facility that employed the predator / offender or allowed the predator / offender to have access to the child. The case against the child predator / sex offender will require the presentation of evidence. If there is a criminal case, information / evidence from the criminal case may be used in the civil case or proceedings. As for the facility, school, day care center, and / or other employer of the sex offender / child predator, the elements of the civil case will require a showing of negligence. In other words, there must be a showing that the negligence or carelessness of the day care centers, school, or other facility was a cause or proximate cause of the incident. The basic elements of most negligence cases involving the proof of the following:

1. Duty;
2. Breach of Duty;
3. Causation; and
4. Damages.

The evaluation, analysis, and pursuit of a civil case or claim against a sex offender / child predator and / or a school, day care center, or other facility can be quite complicated. Because of this, it is important a parent of an injured child to consult with a Florida Child Injury Lawyer for advice and possible legal representation.

The book titled – The ABCs of Child Injury – Legal Rights of the Injured Child – What Every Parent Needs to Know has chapters on Child Abuse, Day Care Center Injuries, School Injuries, Playground Injuries, and other topics. You can get this book for free at The ABCs of Child Injury. Another helpful resource for parents is the book – Florida Day Care Center Injuries – Building Blocks of Knowledge for Parents – What Every Parent Should Know – has chapters on Supervision, Staffing, Record Keeping, and other matters. You can get this book for free at Florida Day Care Center Injuries.