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Sexually abused a child while in a juvenile placement facility. Never reported. What are legal options? Is it too late?

York, PA |

My husband just informed me when he was placed in juvenile facility, he was sexually abused by a male counselor. He never reported it or even talked about it really. He doesn't even like the topic. This came up when we were trying to get his medical records. The actual facility has been moved but the organization has several "homes" currently. So what can he do? I've tried to talk him into coming out - that counselor may still be doing this to other little boys. What would the steps be? Contact police? Any help is appreciated. With the recent Sandusky incident also being in PA, I don't want him to look like he's just trying to sue. He's been scarred for life. He has been diagnosed with social anxiety, depression, bipolar, etc.

Attorney Answers 3


Very sorry to hear this, please see a local civil/personal injury attny in PA right away, and discuss the specifics of the case, he or she will help you and I hope that things work out. take care.

Legal disclaimer: The response given is not intended to create, nor does it create an ongoing duty to respond to questions. The response does not form an attorney-client relationship, nor is it intended to be anything other than the educated opinion of the author. It should not be relied upon as legal advice. The response given is based upon the limited facts provided by the person asking the question. To the extent additional or different facts exist, the response might possibly change. Attorney is licensed to practice law only in the State of Massachusetts. Responses are based solely on Massachusetts law unless stated otherwise.

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Thank you, I will repost the question for personal injury attorneys.


It is not unusual for victims to not want to talk about trauma like that to which your husband was subjected. If he doesn't want to talk about it with you, contacting the police will not help as that can be traumatic itself. It would be good for him to speak with the mental health professional who diagnosed him to figure out in that context whether moving forward with reporting and pursuing legal solutions might be helpful to him.

In addition to that, more than posting a question in another practice area, you might want to use the Find A Lawyer function here at to look for a personal injury lawyer, or more specifically a lawyer in your area who handles cases for adult victims of childhood sexual abuse.

My search of that phrase produced several. One in the Pacific northwest, whose website I have linked below, notes that he has a network of experienced attorneys around the country. The other is licensed in Pennsylvania. Both of their websites have information, even videos, for adult sexual abuse survivors.

NOTE: This answer is made available by the lawyer for educational purposes only. By using or participating in this site you understand that there is no attorney client privilege between you and the attorney responding. This site should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a licensed professional attorney in your area who regularly practices in the subject matter which your question is about. You should develop an attorney client relationship with the lawyer of your choice so that your communications will be subject to the attorney client privilege and have the other benefits of a professional relationship. The law changes frequently and varies from jurisdiction to jurisdiction. The information and materials provided are general in nature, and may not apply to a specific matter as partially described in the question.

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As stated by the other counsel, the first thing is to get your husband into some counseling. You may need to have professional assistance as well to help you deal with your his difficuties.
Whether or not something can be done legally in either a criminal actio, a civil action or both will depend on the statute of limitations. Suggst that even if your husband does not wish to pursue the matter at this moment, you contact a local injury attorney who handles these matters.
In the matters I have handled for molest victims here in Ca, vengence and revenge seem to have been very therapeutic. The healing from forgiveness takes time.

The above is not intended as legal advice. The response does not constitute the creation of an attorney client relationship as this forum does not provide for a confidential communication.

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