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School Sexual Abuse

San Diego School Sexual Abuse Attorneys

Trusted by California victims of school sexual abuse to fight for justice

We register our children for school, then send them off every day assuming they are safely sitting in a classroom whiling the day away with their teacher and classmates getting an education. What you cannot predict is whether they will be forced to learn horrific lessons that you never could have imagined when a teacher or other person of authority in the educational system inflicts sexual abuse on your child. No one deserves to be sexually assaulted, especially your innocent child.

Schools employing adults have a responsibility to ensure these positions of trust are filled with teachers and staff members who only want the best for your son or daughter, and that their first priority is to protect them, not cause life-long harm to them. The team of San Diego sexual assault attorneys at Taylor & Ring have made it their life’s work to protect the rights of sexual abuse survivors and victims and want nothing more than to help you bring your attacker to justice.

The number of sexual assaults in our schools is terrifying

How often do you turn on the news only to see yet another arrest has been made at a school where a teacher has sexually abused one of his or her students? It has sadly become commonplace and San Diego is not insulated from these attacks on our children. In August 2019, a San Diego High School teacher pleaded guilty for the alleged sexual assault of a student, which took place in his car, at a hotel, and his classroom. The man, who assaulted his teenage victim for over a year and threatened her not to disclose the violence, was sentenced to 10 years and will be required to register as a sex offender for life.

According to RAINN, a sexual assault occurs every 92 seconds in the United States with most victims falling under the age of 30. When 93% of child victims know their abusers, the likelihood that predators come in the form of teachers and staff at educational institutions is fairly high. In fact, a 2014 report put out by the nonprofit Stop Educator Sexual Abuse Misconduct & Exploitation (SESAME) claims some startling statistics:

  • A predatory teacher will be transferred to an average of three different schools before being reported to police (“passing the trash”).
  • By the time our children reach high school graduation, 10% of them will become victims of sexual abuse or assault by a school employee.
  • Of the offenders caught, 33% had multiple victims.
  • Half of the offenders that we know of, had been previously reported for inappropriate sexual conduct.

Our sexual abuse attorneys want the perpetrator and the educational system held responsible when your child is hurt by one of their own so that it can’t happen to your child again.

The laws are supposed to prevent sexual assault and abuse in schools

Title IX of the Education Amendment of 1972 requires, by law, that any school receiving federal funding investigate all claims of sexual abuse by an educator. They are legally required to act on complaints, to include stopping the abuse and taking steps to ensure that it doesn’t happen again. California law also requires mandatory reporters to act on any suspected child sexual abuse or assault by reporting it to the police department or sheriff’s department, county probation department, or county welfare department. Reporting to a school district police or security department is not sufficient to comply with the statute, and may actually hinder an investigation.

Sexual assault in San Diego educational institutions

Sexual assault or abuse does not seem to have a “peak period” of school years during which it is more likely to occur. It can take place anytime between nursery school all the way up through college. Anyone can be suspect - teachers, guidance counselors, maintenance staff, professors, security guards, or even another student.

Sexual abuse or assault in schools may include things like:

  • Sexual harassment, or pornographic photos taken of a minor or without consent of a victim over the age of 18.
  • Nonconsensual sex or molestation perpetrated on the victim by a teacher, student, or school employee.
  • Sex between two students who are minors.
  • Sex between a student and an adult that meets California’s legal requirements for statutory rape.

Vulnerable students

Special needs children are particularly susceptible to being sexually assaulted or abused by teachers or staff. Legally, if a student has a particular condition that affects his or her ability to understand the concept of consent, he or she cannot legally agree to engage in sexual behavior regardless of age. Individuals with special needs require more individualized attention to meet their educational needs. This makes them prime targets for being abused because they are naturally more isolated from other students who learn in group settings, and they cannot comprehend what has happened to them as being a crime that they need to report to someone. The attorneys at Taylor & Ring are equipped to understand the sensitivity associated with these delicate cases and are here to help.

Students in higher education

Today, the primary concern with crime on college campuses is the rising number of sexual assaults that occur. The number of college students reporting sexual assault is lower than the actual number of assaults that occur. Reporting can be affected by events surrounding the attack such as a victim being intoxicated during the assault and feeling concerned that he or she will be less likely believed.

Understandably, many students are apprehensive when it comes to reporting sexual assault. Concerns about potential retaliation or rejection by peers at a time in their lives where acceptance is important can seed doubt about whether it’s worth making waves.

Students have also found that their reports are not always believed. This makes their experience that much more traumatic, and leads to lower reporting rates because it makes a statement that there are no consequences for attackers.

School-aged children

While children under the age of 18 are legal minors, they still are not absolved of responsibility for their acts of sexual aggression. In fact, according to the U.S. Bureau of Justice, as of 2016, the most common age of sex offenders is 14.

Children who finally mustered the confidence to come forward and disclose the details of their abuse were re-victimized by school administrators who made snap judgments without conducting an actual investigation, as required by law. Title IV recognizes that children deserve protections from sexual abuse and assault and the law provides them backing to bring claims against their attackers.

Resources for healing San Diego victims

If your child or young adult has been sexually assaulted or abused, he or she will eventually need to find a way to come to terms with what has happened or risk destroying the rest of his or her life. Don’t allow your son or daughter, or yourself to be robbed of your future. Seeking help can be difficult, but understanding that you had no control over the situation and that you did nothing to cause your attack is foremost in taking the initial step to getting your life back. There are resources available to you in San Diego no matter where you are in the process of healing. Some of these services include:

Rape Crisis Hotline: 888-385-4657
District Attorney Victim Assistance Program: 619-531-4041
Women's Resource Center (WRC): 760-757-3500
Rape Abuse Incest National Network (RAINN): 800-656-4673
Department of Defense Sexual Assault Prevention & Response (SAPR) Helpline: 877-995-5247
Indian Health Council: 760-749-1410
x5357 or x5326
La Jolla Band of Luiseno Indians Avellaka Program:760-685-4736
Southern Indian Health Council, Inc: 619-445-1188
Strong Hearted Native Women's Coalition: 760-644-4781
Child Protective Services: 858-560-2191

Our San Diego children deserve compassionate representation

Taylor & Ring has decades of experience in knowing how to act on claims of sexual abuse and assault of children and college students. We have made it our mission to bring the perpetrators of your children to justice. We seek the compensation your child deserves to pay for the necessary resources he or she requires to heal and move past such a heinous experience. Speak with our lawyers today at 310-776-6390 or complete our contact form to schedule a consultation.