Criminal Psychology Chapter 8 Child Sexual Abuse Talbot Kellogg Community College The McMartin Preschool Case 1983 2 ½ year old boy 200 parents were sent letters. 400 children were assessed with 350 being suspected of having been abused. “1984 – Preliminary hearing (17 months) 1990 – Providers were acquitted on all charges. Issues What does this case highlight? Child Abuse Statistics Fiction Batterers are psychopathic personalities. Batterers will stop once they get married. If a batterer is not hitting the child, he/she is not hurting the child. Police can protect the battered woman. Drinking causes battering. Battered women are uneducated. Batterers are unsuccessful. Roles of the Psychologist Diagnostic in nature as it relates to the perpetrator. Sexual Paraphilia Pedophilia Pedophilia Diagnostic criteria for 302.2 Pedophilia (cautionary statement) A. Over a period of at least 6 months, recurrent, intense sexually arousing fantasies, sexual urges, or behaviors involving sexual activity with a prepubescent child or children (generally age 13 years or younger). B. The person has acted on these urges, or the sexual urges or fantasies cause marked distress or interpersonal difficulty. C. The person is at least age 16 years and at least 5 years older than the child or children in Criterion A. Note: Do not include an individual in late adolescence involved in an ongoing sexual relationship with a 12- or 13-year-old. Specify if: Sexually Attracted to Males Sexually Attracted to Females Sexually Attracted to Both Specify if: Limited to Incest Specify type: Exclusive Type (attracted only to children) Nonexclusive Type Implications of this diagnosis? Roles of the Psychologist Evaluation of the child/ Adult for the presence of abuse. How? Roles of the Psychologist Evaluation of the child/ Adult – assessing allegations. Interviewing technique dangers (Wood et. al.) Is content analysis the key? Criteria for analyzing content (19 total)– Marxsen, Yuille and Nisbet (1995) 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. Coherence: Does the statement make 6. Reproduction sense? of conversation: Spontaneous reproduction: Rigid andVerbatim? rehearsed or spontaneous? 7. amount Unexpected complications Sufficient detail: Is there the same of detail given in during the incident? discussing the abusive event as non-abusive events? 8. Unusual details a childtime to Contextual imbedding: Is the account imbedded in afor distinct have made up? and space? 9. Peripheral details? Descriptions of interactions 10. Accurate reported details misunderstood? 11. Self-deprecation? 12. Pardoning the perpetrator? 13. Details characteristic of the act the may not be common knowledge to a child? How can the procedures be improved? Use language which___________________________. Refrain from________________________. Thorough _______________________. Determination of Competency 1. 2. Age? Assessment of the child? Children’s Rights During Testimony Goal of the attorneys? Use of screens or closed circuit TV in order to testify. Not upheld by the Supreme Court.